“I hate people who are not serious about meals. It is so shallow of them.”
The importance of being Earnest. Oscar Wilde
I decides to do a cultural morning with my buddy in our adoptive home, she is a true New Yorker and I am a true Londoner! And we love discovering new things in Paris. We somehow found ourselves catching the bus on a cold smoggy morning heading to the Petite Palais in the 16th arrondissement.
It is the first time I go to this beautiful building. It will definitively not be my last. It is absolutely incredibly grand, nothing petite about this place. Outside of the building gives you a clue what to expect inside, you are welcomed by steps leading to golden gates then after security check, coloured marble floors and large statue awaits you, light is flooded in by the enormous windows and amazing painted ceilings are waiting for you. You could easily spend a long time here walking around and absorbing the different temporary and permanent exhibitions. I discovered they have a winter garden too ! It is beyond romantic and cute.
So why Oscar Wild? A celebrated poet and playwright known for his irony, extravagant behaviour and high society life along with few scandals and drama, Wilde has entered our litrary lives (mine and Katie) without us really knowing it. I have studied one of his plays, An Ideal Husband which was then turn into a film. Another is The Important of being Earnest (2002) played brilliantly by Rupert Everett and Colin Firth. I know that he is buried in Père Lachaise cemetery. I also know he loved to dine well in fashionable restaurants. So he must have been a real foodie ! Tataaaa we have a connection! LOL
Here are some of his food quotes;
“When I am in trouble, eating is the only thing that consoles me. Indeed, when I am in really great trouble, as any one who knows me intimately will tell you, I refuse everything except food and drink”.
Algernon Moncrieff, Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Act 2 (1895)
“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relatives.”
Lady Caroline, Oscar Wilde’s A Woman of No Importance, act 2 (1893)
“I can’t stand people who do not take food seriously.”
“Now I know that all men are monsters […] The only thing to do is to feed the wretches well. A good cook does wonders.”
Duchess of Berwick, Oscar Wilde’s Lady Windermere’s Fan (1893)
The exhibition was a collection of paintings, books, video interviews, books and magazine clips that give you a taste of this remarkable man, who he is, what inspired him his work and their background. I would recommend this exhibition to literary lovers and those interested to know more about Wilde.
I end with a quotes of his that is in the exhibition
“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist. That is all.”
Oscar Wild, l’impertinent absolu
28 Sep – 15 January 2017. €10 adult and FREE for under 18 years old.
Petite Palais , Avenue du Président Wilson , 75116 Paris
Opens 10:00 – 18:00 EXCEPT Mondays.