At the onset of October, days suddenly get shorter. Yet, during the summer, everybody was used to hanging around the city long after dusk. Plugging into this "lingering" urge to stay up late, the mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delanoë, has decided to try something new. Why not turn the first Saturday of this month (Oct 5) into a "Nuit Blanche," or all-nighter? "The stuff dreams are built on"...
This brand-new urban "rendezvous" has a distinctly "cultural" feel to it. In partnership with the RATP public transportation system which agreed to lay on extra night buses "Nuit Blanche" gives Parisians free access to public buildings not usually open after dark, each featuring "in situ" arts projects. At the top of the Eiffel Tower... photographer/filmmaker Sophie Calle "entertains" visitors in her "bedroom." At the Hôtel d'Albret (31 rue des Francs Bourgeois, 4e)... Emmy de Martelaere presents a "Nuit Laboratoire" of installations and non-stop performances.
Hyper-fashionable conceptual artist Fabrice Hybert defines the"Nuit blanche" spirit as "summer in winter." His contribution to the event? A citywide treasure trove dubbed "Paris c'hybert" during which competitors are to scout the town in search of "POFs" quirky "prototype objects" to be "tested" on the spot. Among these... A cube-shaped football, and a bright red car that literally doesnt know whether it's "coming or going." The contest's rallying point? A vernissage at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (11 av du Président Wilson, 16e, tel: 01 53 67 40 00). Its grand finale? A VIP "Cabaret," on October 5.
At the height of "Fashion Week," photographer/TV style show producer Pascal Mourier will be "the hero of the soirée" at an interactive webart extravaganza hosted by Galerie Magda Danysz (Oct 4, 6-11pm, 19 rue Emile Durkheim, 13e). On a king-sized screen, the gallery will project "Dingo's World" Mourier's latest "photo saga" akin to a video game. Computer mouse in hand, participants will "visit" various "locations" representing his unconscious, clicking through a succession of slick visual metaphors alluding to desire. And, death... Thereafter, this "virtual" show will be "visible" by appointment (tel: 01 45 83 38 51), or online (www.magda-gallery.com/virtuel).
More "Twilight Zone" photography at Galerie Mise au Point (58 rue de Clichy, 9e, tel: 01 48 74 72 34) where Yves Lemoine's clair-obscur "abstractions" and "sublimations" of men's faces and bodies are on view until October 31.
During the second half of October, the Louvre has scheduled "Classique en images" a program of screenings and concerts spotlighting "filmed music." Its highlight? An exceptional "coprod" with the Festival d'Automne, intended as a posthumous tribute to prominent experimental composer and architect Iannis Xenakis. By 9:30pm on October 15, up to 1 700 spectators are to gather inside the museum's famed glass and metal "Pyramide," designed by I.M. Pei. All given a cushion to sit on, with the moonlit sky showing through the roof... they'll re-experience three of Xenakis' key pieces, notably "Le Polytope" an electronic laser-enhanced opera originally performed in 1972 at the Cluny museum's Roman baths, in Saint-Germain-des-Prés. (Tickets 10E/7.50E: 01 40 20 84 00)
Who says historical screenplays have to be "a snore"? The daughter of Paris-based Brit singer-actress Jane Birkin and French films d'auteur director Jacques Doillon, Lou Doillon stars in Blanche, an ultra-wacky, swashbuckling motion picture set in Cardinal Mazarin's period of terror. Who knows? Maybe, this "absolutely ridiculous" parody's rap-like repartee and "spaghetti western" soundtrack will be as popular with Anglo-American audiences as former French Golden Globe-nominee "Ridicule"?
From October 23 to November 3, its "Halloween" at the Cinémathèque Française film archive's Grands Boulevards locale, opposite the Rex Club. Among the cinematic "tricks and treats" in store... Doctor Jeckyll and Mr Hyde. Dracula's bride. Zombies and chainsaws. And, of course... Jamie Lee Curtis in John Carpenter's 1978 classic "Halloween." (Oct 31, 9:30pm, 42 bd de Bonne Nouvelle, 10e, infoline: 01 56 26 01 01))
Where to dress up for an all-nighter? The perfect boutique is M le maudit named after Fritz Lang's 1931 vampire-inspired gangster movie "M." In this très Hollywood haunt run by German designer Daniela Telle, you'll unearth glad rags by young European and transatlantic creators, at the crossroads of streetwear and clubber glam (13 rue Gérando, 9e, tel: 01 44 53 07 25).
On the fragrance front... Canadian broadcaster/cosmetics manufacturer Lise Watier has launched a perfume called "Capteur de rêves" a reference to the cobweb-shaped "dream catching" talismans traditionally thought to protect native Americans from their nightmares. This woody, floral scent will be available in Paris from next month. First, at the Galeries Lafayette department store. Then, via the Sephora perfumery chain.
Out at last (around Oct 1), the latest release by French Touch icons Philippe Zdar and Hubert Boombass otherwise known as "Cassius" is titled "Au rêve." As in "rêve" ("dream")... Or, "rave"? With its strong "special guest" vocals, pounding sounds, ethereal electro-instrumentals and virtuoso samples, it's the ideal CD for "nuits blanches" addicts.