Friday, February 1, 2013

La Belle Époque - Beautiful Era

A time of learning, invention, design and innovation. La Belle Époque or simply Belle Époque, refers to the years between 1871 - 1914. 
 

In the UK, it paralleled the Victorian and the Edwardian eras. In the USA, this period was called the Gilded Age. Kaiser Wilhelm and Alexander III still ruled their respective countries. France was at the forefront of modern knowledge and new methods. 



Au Lapin Agile Cabaret, Montmartre, Paris, by DG Hudson


Au Lapin Agile Cabaret

During the Belle Époque Picasso and other artists frequented the Au Lapin Agile Cabaret (the nimble rabbit cabaret), a Montmartre spot where art was discussed and sometimes accepted as payment for an artist's bill. Picasso made the cabaret famous in his 1905 painting, At the Lapin Agile.

Prominent artists in Paris during the Belle Époque included post-Impressionists Paul Gaugin, Henri Matisse, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and a young Pablo Picasso.  There were many more.

 

 Maxim's in Paris, part of the Belle Epoch, by DG Hudson


Maxim's was founded as a bistro in 1893 and later became a Paris hotspot. One of its chefs included the young Wolfgang Puck. Maxim's, embellished with Art Nouveau designs, was a well-known gathering spot during the Belle Époque, the restaurant where everyone in Paris went to be seen. 
 
In Montmartre, the Moulin Rouge



Moulin Rouge, Montmartre, Paris by DG Hudson


The Can-can dance was a popular 19th-century cabaret style that appears in Toulouse-Lautrec's posters from the era. This nostalgic period is featured in Midnight in Paris along with the Lost Generation. In Belle Époque Paris as now, the Moulin Rouge is a landmark famous for its burlesque performances 
 

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Did you see Midnight in Paris? Do you consider this time period a romantic period or a scientific era? Would you want to live then? 

Please share in the comments and thanks for stopping by!



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References:

Youtube - Belle Epoque
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kL8xA3-DLBU

http://dghudson-rainwriting.blogspot.ca/2012/04/m-montmartre-paris-to-z-blog-challenge.html   Montmartre post for 2012 A to Z Challenge

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belle_%C3%89poque Belle Epoque
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lapin_Agile - Au Lapin Agile Cabaret (artists' hangout)

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16 comments:

  1. I've never seen Midnight in Paris or the film Moulin Rouge, but we ate there when I was on a school trip to London & Paris in 12th grade. I am sure we were fed horsemeat burgers b/c they sure didn't taste like beef. All in all, Paris was a very bad experience for me.

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    1. I'm sorry your experience wasn't so good, JoJo, but consider that you went in the 12th grade. The French are proud of their cooking, but if it was a tourist spot, those aren't the best places to eat. Beef in France tastes different than the overcultured beef in the USA.

      I had a bad travel experience in Miami, which I didn't like at all, South Beach was okay, but I don't care to see the rich and famous, so it held no allure for me. I found the people unfriendly, and I hated the boutique Spanish run hotel. Key West was more laid back, and less frenetic.

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  2. I still have not watched Midnight In Paris. It's on my list, though. And what a vibrant time to have been alive in Paris.

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    1. Do watch Midnight in Paris, LG. I highly recommend it. I don't watch movies more than once, usually, but this one, I'll watch again. Hubs and I kept saying, hey, we were there. Loved it.

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  3. I couldn't read this post without thinking of 'Midnight in Paris,' again and again. Did you see that film, D.G.?

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    1. For sure, Suze. See my comment to LG. I love the casting of Hemingway and Dali. I'd prefer the time of the Lost Generation to the Belle Epoque, as I like more modern conveniences.

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  4. One of my favorite movies. My Russian dad was in Paris in the 20's, having escaped there from the Revolution. Many White Russians were there as well. He loved Paris. When he reached New York he had such a French accent that people called him "Frenchy" and he changed his last name to
    "French" when he became a citizen. So, seeing Paris during the 20's would be my choice.

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    1. I love all that history you've told about your dad, thanks, loverofwords! Paris would have been very different from a Russian city, even as it is today. I can see why you'd like to visit that time.

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  5. GREAT post, girl! This period AND Paris is the setting for Rouge #2, so my answer is YES! LOL! :D

    Best~ <3

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    1. Yes, I like books about Paris, is the first Rouge in Paris too? I will have to check out Rouge #2, for sure when it's ready.

      I've got a Paris book on the backburner, a woman's alternative history story.

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  6. It's funny because I've often thought I was born in the wrong era and I think I would have enjoyed living during La Belle Époque or the roaring twenties, as long as I was rich and money was not a problem. People with little resources had it pretty bad, but I guess the same could be said about any era...

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    1. Yes, in almost every era and every country, the poor are the forgotten ones.

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  7. I'm not sure I'd want to live in that time, but it sure is romanticized in my mind. I'm weird, though. I'd want to live in the Wild West, and when you think of the logistics of that, that's just crazy talk, right? But when I'm out hiking around here, I find myself wishing I'd lived here before there were so many houses, so much industry, so many people. Just the rugged, often vicious, wild.

    See? Weird.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

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    1. No, not weird. Our choice of where in the past we'd like to visit hinges on our own experiences or interests.

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  8. It was such a rich time and lots of writers and artists hung out together back then. I think it would've been fab to have been part of that. Maybe the 50's or 60's would be better though.

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  9. Maybe we could use a Backworlds wormhole to check it out.

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