Beautiful and slightly sinister, Les Dandys, the new collection from iBride, have all the markings of the French design company's signature style - elegant and witty anthropomorphism with a disquieting sense of realism. The hunt is on.
Student of Rodin, contemporary of Maillol and lover of gargantuan proportions, the eminent French sculpture, Émile-Antoine Bourdelle (1861-1929) had his wicked way with stone. Luckily for France, he had an altruistic family and his wife and daughter left a huge body of his work to the state. Luckily for me, his studio and museum is tucked away on rue Antoine Bourdelle, just around the corner from mon petit studio.
Another chance discovery as I was busy spotting vintage Minis on the way to Montparnasse, the museum garden full of centaurs, archers and enormous horses stopped me in my tracks. Inside, colossal stone statues from Greek and medieval mythology dwarf the human visitors in all their warm-blooded frailty. The studio itself is a jumble of inquisitive heads and busts, while outside, gigantic mythological freizes clash with the view of the neighbouring new-build apartment blocks.
Young French artist Noemie Goudal prefers when things are not what they seem. Her subtly surreal photography reveals places and faces sensitively captured in twin realms of fantasy and decay. I love the juxtapositions, the crumbling buildings and the sense of longing.
This was a truly Parisian find. By that I mean something happened upon randomly, without intention, in a perfectly serendipitous moment of discovery. Occasionally, when you're not looking too hard, Paris reveals a glimpse of its true self, as far from Eiffel Towers and crepes au chocolat as I heart Paris t-shirts are from Yves Saint Laurent.
In one of the elegant covered galeries that snake surreptitiously through the city, filtering tourists and gawpers alike, the tiny Galerie Moisan houses the latest collection from French artist Christian Benoit. Delicate, luminous and deliciously eerie, the collection of paintings represent a forgotten landscape, abandoned by inhabitants and ravaged by time. Done purely from imagination, the fictional spaces form an interior landscape fascinating in its detail and simplicity.
We stood gazing interminally, lost in Benoit's dream world, and when the kindly owner switched off the lights to enable us to see better, the paintings seemed to glow with an internal luminosity.
On a jaunt to Colette to soak up the scene, I got sucked into their carefully edited magazine section and was instantly hooked. What caught my eye was Magazine, the "style, media and creative industry's" own special rag which gives the skinnie on industry trends, movers and shakers, and most importantly, other magazines. It's also has super slick art direction and great photography.
I've officially joined the Kate Lanphear cult. The monotone palette, the hair, the leather, the studs - what's not to love? The style director of ELLE US has gathered a ferocious following, thanks to a look that can only be described as "fierce", and not in a Beyonce way.
For the slightly more obsessed, check out http://fearlanphear.blogspot.com/