Here's another view of Stravinsky Fountain which I mentioned in my post about the Pompidou Center next door. What draws me to this scene is the juxtaposition of old and new, the modern and the traditional, the quirky and the classic.
We walked over here specifically to see the fountain which is populated by moving sculptures inspired by Igor Stravinsky's works including Rite of Spring. Listen to it here as you imagine yourself in the photo. Some of the pieces are a dramatic black while others are a riot of color. Finished in 1983, it was designed to blend with the modern architecture of the Pompidou Centre.
When I first turned the corner and saw this scene, what really caught my eye was the enormous mural of the face with a finger to the lips. This work is a self portrait created in 2011 by Jef Aerosol, a French stencil grafitti artist. It's official name is "Chuuuuttt!" which I'm guessing is the French version of "Hush!" At 350 square meters, it was made with one of the largest stencils in the world.
Behind the vibrantly chaotic fountain and the domineering face is the "gothique flamboyant"-style Saint-Merri Church built in the 16th century. If this was plunked down in America, people would drive from all over to see it. Here in Paris, it does not even rate a mention in the guidebooks. Its bell tower holds Paris' oldest bell made in 1331, and it has been the sight of many organ concerts from famous musicians and composers such as Saint-Saens. We don't even go inside as there are so many other places to see in town.
This photograph embodies what I love about Paris. It has so much history behind it that even the bit players seem huge to my American eyes. Yet, it's modern, alive and full of energy.
What do you love about Paris?
This post is part of Travel Photo Monday on Travel Photo Discovery,Travel Photo Thursday on Budget Travelers Sandbox, "Oh the Places I've Been" on The Tablescaper, Sunday Traveler at Ice Cream and Permafrost and Friday Postcards at Walking On Travels. Check them out for around-the-world travel inspiration.