Creative Paris Personnage

Illustration: Elliot Elam

You can see the metro from your Belleville window, and as soon as the Bobos taking their kids to school clear off, you’ll stop by the Le Président for a nêm au porc: cheap and nutritious, the perfect breakfast.  All the pain au choc’ and croissants will have been sold out by the time you emerge from your appart’ anyway. You tuck the right leg of your pants into your sock and hoist your bike onto your shoulder.  You’re on your way to your shared atelier in Saint Ouen.  Sure, it’s a pain to get to, especially on the bike – especially since the seat fell off (you really need to get that fixed) – but ever since you switched to ceramics you’ve been tellement inspiré, like you haven’t been in years. The collective show you did in Brussels last month went well… well… well, you would say in comparison to others. You managed to sell a piece but the gallery kept more than you think is fair. They always do.  Still, the gallery served a really nice Sancerre at the vernissage – a nice break from of your usual lower-than-Kronenbourg-in-a-can beer.  Although, honestly, the taste isn’t so bad and drinking it is also kind of a comment in and of itself. It’s a fun dialogue between pretending and consumption that you sometimes hope comes through in your work, although your friends do appreciate the occasional Champagne splurge whenever you sell something. You’re very much into the manipulation of bodies lately, and you’ve spent practically the whole week at Musée de la Chasse et Nature.  Thank god you’re an artist and get free access to museums. Paris is the only city in the world that understands la vie creatif, and as long as that continues, so will you.

Our favourite places to spot a Creative

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Marché d’Aligre

With Emile Zola’s ‘belly of Paris’, Les Halles, reduced to a grim, labyrinthine shopping complex and a hunk of land permanently ‘under construction’, Parisians were in need of another market standard. Thus Marché d’Aligre, situated near metro Ledru-Rollin in the 12th arrondissement, has taken over and been nicknamed the ‘little’ belly of Paris. Aligre, which is open every day except … [CLICK TO READ MORE]


VDB is a bit of a sleeper. On a side-street off the more well-trodden ‘lower’ Oberkampf, of Aux Deux Amis et al, I had been meaning to check out this open-fronted cave à vins since I noticed it open in summer 2012. Almost two years later I can’t believe it took me this long. While VDB has all the right … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Felicity Lemon

Words: Jill Diane Pope Image: Jill Diane Pope On an unassuming street in the 20th arrondissement lies a small outpost of modern bistro cuisine at seemingly impossible Parisian prices. Despite living just around the corner, it took several months for me to notice the welcoming garland of fairy lights adorning Felicity Lemon’s façade, and to be consequently lured in by … [CLICK TO READ MORE]


Words: Jill Pope Food, wine and art – could there be a more holy trinity? If you answered yes, then you’ll no doubt welcome Düo, a new bar, restaurant and art gallery, to the 11th arrondissement. Surrounded by other neighbourhood stalwarts Paris-Feni, Ave Maria and Al Taglio, Düo is run by the team behind its anagrammatic cousin Udo, located just … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

En Vrac

This is a caviste with a difference. For those who love drinking wine and saving the planet En Vrac provides an opportunity to combine those two worthy objectives in its small boutique just near the Marché de l’Olive in the 18th arrondissement. Here, as in many cave à mangers around the city you can purchase a bottle of wine either … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Le Bal Café

  Words: Omid Tavallai Anna Trattles sits across from me at one of the handful of tables inside the high-ceilinged, white-walled, windowed room that is Le Bal Café. “You’ve got five minutes,” she says, constantly looking past the counter and into the kitchen door, anticipating the prep work for the upcoming dinner shift. Her co-conspirator Alice Quillet is across from … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Marché de l’Olive La Chapelle

Text: Emily Sands-Bonin The recently-refurbished Marché de l’Olive has been hailed as very “Baltard” by Bertrand Delanoë, mayor of Paris, an allusion to French 19th century architect Victor Baltard, designer of Les Halles, Paris’ mythical central market. But if Les Halles, destroyed in 1971, has given way to the Forum des Halles, a tacky shopping district located in the heart … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Outdoor Swimming

Text: Nick Forrester Swimming isn’t really the same in summer unless you can do it outside. But where can one possibly hope to find outdoor swimming in central Paris? There are 30 or so public swimming pools located within the Périphérique, all very well priced at around 3 Euros for a one-off entry. However, most of them are serious indoor … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Le Festin d’Ève

Text: Philip Tonda.  Meet culinary chef Eve Tribouillet-Rozencweig and get to know her inventive creations. She’s a perfectionist, she’s fun, and she never does the same thing twice! Lately she developed a culinary event following the opening of the exhibition “Josef Albers in America” at Centre Pompidou (which you can still see until the end of April), organized by The … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Poetry night in the 1e Arrondissement

Text: Emily Ruck Keene Paris can be a city of secrets, especially for the English-speaking poetry-lover. Where do you go for live readings, open mic, or simply for performances you can understand?  Little pockets of Anglophonic creative outlets are all over the city, it just takes a bit of research. And, as with everything in Paris, once the door is … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Classic Parisian Movie Houses

Text: Brian Clark Slipping into a small theatre at two in the afternoon to catch a beat-up 35mm print of an old movie is probably one of the most authentically Parisian activities still available in the city. On any given day in Paris, there are at least four or five amazing movies from the past waiting to be discovered or … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Atelier Boba : Photo Prints ´sur mesure´

  Text: Philip Tonda The new Paris-based photo studio Atelier Boba does not only offer printing and technical advice on a high, professional level; they are also, unlike most printing places, very competent in giving artistic advice on your art project and photo work. Owner Ryan Boatright, an artist himself, has long worked intensely with photography in various ways. When moving to … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

A Letter to George Whitman

Text: Guillermo Martinez de Velasco Escobedo I don’t think it would be polite of me to state the number of hours I’ve spent at Shakespeare and Company. Surely, I’m not the only Parisian who has spent ridiculous amounts of time in that nook that hangs around to the side of Nôtre-Dame. This tiny Anglophone bookstore, to me, was something that … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

Sainte Chapelle

Text: Emily Ruck Keene I’d been past this place so many times on my bike and wondered at the long lines of predominantly Asian and American tourists standing outside, but never once had I dismounted to investigate the Sainte Chapelle, perhaps because of her transitory position on the Ile de la Cité, bridging Chatelet and Saint Michel. Although to say … [CLICK TO READ MORE]

The Gaîté Lyrique

Text: Aidan Mac Guill The Théâtre de la Gaîté Lyrique first opened in its current location on the rue Papin in 1862. That incarnation was itself a reconstruction of the original Théâtre de la Gaîté, which had opened on the boulevard du Temple in 1808, but was destroyed in the construction of the boulevard Voltaire. That itself had been what … [CLICK TO READ MORE]