"XVI Arr: following Guimard's steps" Paris Off The Beaten Path Tip by Elisabcn
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Hector Guimard (1867-1942) is the architect considered the most prominent representative of the French Art Nouveau, movement of the end of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth centuries. Guimard attended the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Paris where he became acquainted with the theories of Viollet-le-Duc. These rationalist ideas provided the foundations of the past structural principles of Art Nouveau. For sure everybody knows Guimard’s métro bouches and fourniture but during 15 years of prolific activity he also left some interesting buildings, most of them in the XVIth Arrondissement.
The Castel Beranguer (14 Rue de la Fontaine) made Guimard famous and we can find here most of the subjects dear to the architect: the bow window, loggias and cast iron balconies (picture 2). With this building he won the first prize in the Ville de Paris façades competition in 1898 but it was very criticized by people. They said it was the fool’s work who had a relationship with the demon! Guimard took care of all the details, even the interiors are his work. You can even find the architect’s caricature on some balconies! (picture 3)
Hotel Guimard (122 Rue Mozart) was finished in 1909 as a wedding present for his rich American wife. The ovoid rooms contained unique pieces of furniture, some of them still displayed at Petit Palais Museum (picture 4). You can find other Guimard’s buildings in the area like Hôtel Mezzara at 60 Rue de la Fontaine (main picture) or Villa Flore at Avenue Mozart.
Guimard’s only religious building is a little bit far from here, at Marais quarter in the IVth Arrondissement . La Synagogue de la Rue Pavée (1913) is an interesting narrow building with vertical lines which end up with a David star (picture 5). This synagogue is opened to the public only during special occasions like les Journées du Patrimoine.
othercontact: M. Michel Ange Auteuil, Jasmin
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