arts & culture

Books | Recommendation No. 01: Gabriële by Anne & Claire Berest

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Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
Author Anne Berest (via @anneberest)
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
"Pendant trois ans, ma sœur Claire et moi avons vécu avec Gabriële. Et voilà, le livre est là." --from Anne Berest's Instagram page
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
Gifts of books & flowers in Anne Berest's home

GABRIËLE
The saga of a surrealist muse, from Montmartre to New York
By Anne and Claire Berest

For me, reading was always the most captivating thing to do—I could spend hours in the sensation of escaping my world for another. And so, I am more than honoured to be able to share books I read, books I love with you all ...

For this first book presentation I will tell you about the book of a beloved French écrivaine: Anne Berest. She and her sister Claire Berest fussioned their writing styles, idéeas and their past, to give Gabriële, their grand-grand mother, a voice.

After three year of research, Gabriële, takes life. “La femme, les femmes, une matière d'inspiration inépuisable” says Anne Berest—"woman, women, are an endless source of inspiration".

Theoretician of art, artist's muse and feminist, Gabriële Buffet-Picabia had a significant place in the world of art at the beginning of XXème siècle.

Although she's not often mentioned in the context of art, this biography of her presents her with so many facettes. Being a student of Schola Cantorum, which was a unique thing in her époque, set her on the course to becoming a great compositrice. Gabriële, however, leaves it all behind to dedicate her energy and creativity into Francis Picabia's work. (As you know, Picabia was a French avant-garde painter, poet and typographist. After experimenting with Impressionism and Pointillism, he became associated with Cubism, and was one of the early major figures of the Dada movement in the United States and France.)

While his name is mostly associated with the Dada movement, he is also famed for his passion for cars, women, and vitesse ...

Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
A Canal at St. Mammes by Francis Picabia
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
The artist Francis Picabia
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
The Embarassment by Francis Picabia - 1914 oil on canvas

Gabriële, with her incredible independence d'esprit, modeled the artist into being an innovateur in his work. At the time where Gabriële and Picabia meet, the artist was famous for his impressionist work, but after the encounter with Gabriële, he transferred to l'abstrait, to l'art modern.

She was the one thinking the tableau en avance, she integrated her passion for music into her husband's painting, transforming sounds into colours. Remaining in the shadows all along the process made her such a powerful, modern woman of her time.

Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
Sisters Anne & Claire Berest
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
Sisters Anne & Claire Berest
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
Anne Berest at her book signing on September 21, à la librairie Galignani, 224 Rue de Rivoli, Paris
Book Review: Gabriële by Claire Berest Anne Berest
"Après trois jours de vacances, repenser avec nostalgie aux moments de l'année, quand on travaillait comme des acharnées - et qu'on rêvait des vacances. " --from Anne Berest's Instagram page

Hope you will have a chance to read the book, available here (for now only in French).

For more books written by Claire:
Bellevue (2016)
L'orchestre vide (2012)
Mikado (2011)

And Anne:
Recherche femme parfaite (2015)
Sagan 1954 (2014)
How to be Parisian wherever you are (2014)

Credits

Images via: @anneberest; WikiArt; Pinterest; featured image, Isabelle Adjani photographed by Jean-Claude Deutsch



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Daniela Chelariu, Travel Editor, Paris
Travel Editor, Paris

Dana is a fragile dreamer, they say, arriving in Paris four years ago, for love, and the city has been constantly changing her life since then. Hers is a world of books, (Marguerite Duras, Simone de Beauvoir, Anne Berest), expos, long walks sur les quais de Seine, pink skies, fine wine and peonies.
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