As I prepare for the Paris Paper Show the first week of February (see my post with details) I realize that I should get back to my previous trip in October and finish what I wanted to post.
That being said one of the highlights of Paris in October was a visit to Nicole Canet's marvelous bordello-like, red velvet draped, photographs and art gallery, Au Bonheur du Jour. I visited on a quite morning and returned a few nights later for an opening of her latest show Decors de Bordels.
As always, Mde Canet, Nicole, has on view an excellent selection of high quality photographs and art works of the nude, the erotic and in this case, documentation of Parisian maisons-close, aka whorehouses, bordellos. The opening was also to celebrate the new book published by Nicole filled with exceptional documentation of many Paris bordellos. It includes very beautiful photographs of interiors, many not previously published.
Above is an amazing, turn-of-the-century relic from a Parisian maison-close recently purchased by Nicole at auction. It is not a condom warmer, but a heater, room radiator. I was told that the under-bidder was EGF/GDF the French National Electric and Gas Company! Photographed in the window of the gallery.
I highly recommend a visit to the gallery while in Paris. Check details on the website, as with most galleries/boutiques in Paris, the hours are limited. Photos from the opening night and my gallery visit follow.
The back room, bordello-like gallery space, filled with art work, photographs and curious objects in vitrines. Nicole and her assistants have an exceptional talent for arranging and presenting the material on view.
Gallery space and some of the opening night attendees. Nicole in the center above.
Earlier in the week I had an early morning rendezvous with Nicole, which is always entertaining and interesting, sharing "war stories", comparing notes and doing business.
Note the Brassai photographs (two on the right and another lower left) for the Diana Slip Company.
Nicole showing her Decors de Bordels book to a client.
Canes and umbrellas circa 1900 with erotic decorations or stanhopes.
Vitrine with circa 1880s ~ 1900 photo albums.
In another vitrine: very rare maison-close jeton ~ whorehouse tokens. Buy two hours with a prostitute and get the third one free!
Entrance to the gallery. I love this place!
Two photographs by Eugene Atget. Entrances to Parisian maisons-close.