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Paris Project Room vernissage
courtesy of Paris Project Room
Wassuup !
by Georgina Oliver

As Concorde prepares to take to the skies again... And, with the investiture of the new United States Ambassador to France, Howard Leach, iminent... It's been back to business for everybody. So, why can’t we shake out of our systems those neurone-numbing “silly season” hits we’ve been dancing to, all summer? Like Da Muttz yelling “Wassuup!” down their cellphones in “Da Album”? Wassuup??... we ask, on reconnecting with the urban jungle. What new projects are in the works, this fall?

Project 101
A new face, Thibaud de Barmon is a young “aristo” who’s been places. Formerly a DJ in Singapore, he set out on a grand tour of Asia at 23. Four years in Honk Kong, Taipei... Seoul and Tokyo. Now, he describes himself as “a multimedia ‘PerFormer’ who wants to go beyond the mix and mingles.” Every Friday, at Project 101, de Barmon hosts experimental electro/techno/drum’n’bass soirées. Also a video artist, he projects hurdy-gurdy, hurly-burly... images of the cities he's visited, directly on the walls of the dance floor, in the basement of his groovy if tiny two-story locale. Entry is 50F, then it’s “open bar.” On September 7, zero in on the season’s first theme event billed as a “Cyberpunk 2001 bionic odyssey” with visual inspirations ranging from “Blade Runner” to “Eraserhead.” (44 rue de la Rochefoucauld, 9e /

Paris Project Room
The last of nine subway stations to be given a trendy makeover to fête the RATP’s centennial, M° Bonne Nouvelle is currently screening cinematic images on the billboard spaces of its “direction Pont de Sèvres” platform. The good news is that this is the metro station for another small place with big projects, two streets away at 19 rue de l’Echiquier... Opened last spring, Paris Project Room is a gallery that’s an arts concept in itself. Behind it, Seul-Gi Lee, 28, a graduate of the Ensb-a (Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts) and Simon Boudvin, 21 and still studying there. In a reference to the way “real” galleries operate, they’ve invented a fictitious “gallery director” named “Marcel Wallace” who acts on their behalf and even sends out a regular newsletter. In July, “Marcel” presented a show of arty T-shirts that got them a page in Libération. Light-years away from “the standard commercial approach, with young hopefuls queuing up with their portfolios, hoping to become stars overnight... ,” their policy is to encourage exhibitors to take part in joint installations specially conceived for the space. Opening hours? 4-9pm and they’re usually closed on Monday and Tuesday. However, they’ll be open on Monday September 10 for a Sept 7-10 “co-production” between Ensb-a alumnus Laurence Vincent and Nina Sidow, a Berlin artist based at the Cité des Arts. (

Café Chéri(e)
Everybody's talkin’ about... Galerie Rouge 44, “a real gallery, with proper opening hours and regular events” (Tue-Sat, 2-8pm, 44bd de la Villette, 19e), that’s niched above Café Chéri(e), a hot Belleville venue whose daily techno wingdings begin at 9pm. From September 6 to 22, the gallery presents “Flyers,” a historical expo curated by “Flyman,” a master of this alternative genre.

Already known to vinyl freaks as the organizers of vintage record fairs, Collectomania now has a store of its own specializing in '50s-'70s golden oldies, all unused. Stop by for a chat with Marcel Rapp who'll help you sift through the racks for everything from “Bond, James Bond...” movie soundtracks or rare Beatles EPs to the three “r’s” R&B, reggae and rock’n’roll. He’ll also tell you about this month’s not-to-be-missed disk “conventions,” at the Maison de la Radio (Sept 12-16) and Bercy on September 23, a Sunday. (Tue-Sat, 2-7pm, 20bis rue de l’Ingénieur Keller, 15e, tel: 01 45 75 49 40)

La Vie en Roses
The heights of “no-tech,” this rose-tinted, bouquet-sized boutique gives “a rose is a rose is a rose” new meaning. Along with exceptionally fragrant “haute couture” blooms sold by the stem, La Vie en Roses proffers a multiplicity of “rose” by-products: candles, scented postcards, jelly, honey, mustard, breakfast ware... Even a rosewood pillowcase spray (55F). Also on the — pink — shelves, Manuel Canovas’ chic line of home fragrances (75-310F). (48 rue Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, 9e, tel: 01 42 82 13 49)

Precious Bar
Diamonds are a girl’s best friends according to a song as familiar as Edith Piaf’s “La Vie en rose,” yet Marie-Hélène de Taillac’s Precious Bar on the ground floor of the Colette concept store vaunts the magic properties of other gems. Marie-Hélène spends six months of the year in India picking out precious and semi-precious stones “with special energizing, protective or appeasing qualities” for her ultra-cool jewelry influenced by ancient civilizations as well as tribal art. (213 rue St-Honoré, 1er, tel: 01 55 35 33 90)

17 by Carole de Bona
Numbers can be magic too... So, there’s a 10 to 1 chance that Paris’ “Absolument Fabulous” crowd will be scrambling to get into the launch party of a fab space called “17 by Carole de Bona.” Scheduled to open its doors on September 20, this 3,000 square meter multipurpose modular emporium is de Bona’s dream project come true — an art gallery, attached to a publishing house, with a music corner and beauty spa thrown in, plus... a fashion section spotlighting on-the-up labels like Jean-Paul Knott, Jérome Dreyfuss and Alexandre-Matthieu. (17 rue de Sèvres, 6e)


Oops!... You’ve only got until September 16 to see Paris-based Guy Schraenen’s documentary expo titled “oop” (a pun on “out of print”). Based on an internationally-renowned “Small Press & Communication” archive which now belongs to Germany’s Weserburg Neues Museum, this scholarly 1960-80 overview includes exhibition posters, conceptual statements and landmark critical publications such as Lucy R. Lippard’s “Six years: The dematerialization of the art object.” (Cneai, Maison Levanneur, Ile des Impresssionistes, Chatou, RER A, tel: 01 39 52 45 35)

Komodo Resto
With the success of jet-setters’ haunts like Nobu, the Japanese/world food restaurant on rue Marbeuf backed by Robert de Niro and French media celebs... Chefs who haven’t gone “global” are increasingly rare. Many Asian establishments no longer restrict themselves to a single culinary territory. Such is the philosophy behind Komodo, a Left Bank resto run by Jeremy Hague, a Brit whose “compilation” menu constitutes a “magical mystery tour” of Thailand, China, Japan, Viet Nam and India. (16 rue du Dragon, 6e, tel: 01 45 48 49 49/

The countdown to the great EU monetary switch is beginning to feel like pre-millennium jitters. Are U going to boycott Euro convertors? Or, are U going to buy a translucent gizmo to go with your blue i-Mac, like Addex Design’s “Bloomy” desk model.? (99F)

Da Muttz yelling "Wassup!"
courtesy of WEA

Marie-Hélène de Taillac
©Portrait Nicolas Bruant / courtesy of Colette

… and her jewelry sold at her new Precious Bar on the ground floor of the Colette concept store
Jewelry - Yann Bohac / courtesy of Colette

Chiars outside La Vie en Roses, "no-tech" boutique that sells roses as well as rose-scented or decorated gifts"
courtesy La Vie en Roses

Komodo's dragon logo
courtesy of Komodo

… and a Saturday night at the restaurant.
courtesy of Komodo

ADDEX Design Euro convertors
courtesy of Mariette Landon & Associes