I’ve just come back from a long weekend break in Paris where, apart from the usual eating, drinking and shopping, I managed to fit in some cultural activity. After my regular shot of impressionism from the Musée d’Orsay (I never tire of looking at works by Degas and Toulouse-Lautrec) and a visit to the Musée Carnavalet (a little gem of a museum in the heart of the Marais) we had almost used up all our cultural goodwill when we strolled to the Ile Saint-Louis. And, lo and behold, we chanced upon this open-air exhibition taking place during the month of October.
“Women are Heroes” is the current exhibition by the street artist JR on the walls of the Ile Saint-Louis in Paris. The artist travelled to 70 countries such as Kenya, Sierra Leone and Liberia to take portraits of women. He uses a 28mm wide-angle lens to take the portraits and this exhibition is the third phase of a series known as the 28 Millimetre Project. JR and his team pasted the photographic images onto the bridges and walls of the Ile Saint-Louis over a few days. Using a ‘street audio guide’ system, passers-by can dial a free number from their mobile phones, to hear interviews with these women and their life-stories. Unfortunately we only found out about the commentary availability till later that evening but if you are there over the remaining weeks of the exhibition I’d recommend a visit.
Women are Heroes can be found around the Ile Saint-Louis (Paris), 3 October to 2 November 2009. Metro : Pont Marie, Hotel de Ville