Brad Feld

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Centre Pompidou

May 14, 2006

Today’s Paris Museum tour once again brought to you by La Vache and his new friend, Le Scary Badass Manhorse Sculpture About To Step on La Vache (Amy told me this is actually a Cesar.)

The Centre Pompidou was our quest today and it didn’t disappoint as it just moved up to the #1 position in the Feld / Batchelor Art of Paris in May competition. The experience begins with an amazing building that was the pet project of President Georges Pompidou, designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, built in 1977, and then renovated in 1999. 


My photo sucks – just go to the main page on the web site if you want to see a really beautiful picture of the Centre Pompidou.  Or – take my word for it – the building is awesome.

The exhibits were fantastic.  Ironically, the special exhibit was Los Angeles 1955 – 1985: Birth of an Artistic Capital.  Amy and I chuckled a lot on our way up that we had to go to Paris to see a bunch of LA art, but with the exception of a killer Irwin, a few Hoppers (Dennis), some Turrells, a Hockney, a couple of Ruscha’s, and a Diebenkorn, the vast majority of art was new to me. 

An hour later, we went down a few floors to see Le Mouvement Des Images.  As I wandered around, I realized part of the beauty of the exhibit was the way the museum flowed.  I’ve been in so many contemporary museums that felt like they stifled the art – Centre Pompidou definitely shows it off.  Near the end of the tour, I stumbled over a Moebius Strip which made me smile.  It’s by Max Bill and is called “Unendliche Schleife version IV (1960–1961).”

Artistically satiated but hungry, we decided to continue our quest for Mexican Food.  We’d counted four Starbucks on our way from our apartment to the Centre Pompidou and had seen a sign for “Tex Mex” across the street so we felt hopeful.  We traced our steps back to St. Germain where we found “Indiana.”

While the food was pretty good, the scene was completely bizarre.  I grew up in Dallas, so Tex Mex has a certain very specific meaning to me.  The food definitely was of the “Tex Mex” genre, but the art and posters on the walls were of Indians (Native American Indians ).  Headresses and feathers everywhere, along with a giant “Red Man Chewing Tobacco” sign.  There was even a poster that said “Cleveland” (which I presume referred to the Cleveland Indians.)  At some point Amy said “didn’t the Tex Mex people kill the Indians, introduce them to smallpox and alcohol, and drive them from their land?”  I imagine the scenery inside the restaurant was goofed up in the same way a Parisian bistro would be in Boulder, Colorado.  At least the food was good.