NUIT BLANCHE literally means either White Night or All Nighter in Paris but it is actually an art show of sorts put on by the city council. Museums and other cultural places are open all night long (well 7 PM to 7 AM) for art exhibits, performances and social gatherings. The events are incredibly creative and funky. Nuit Blanche this year was this past Saturday - which also was the night France beat the All Blacks in Rugby! So that increased the overall craziness of the city!!! It was so wild to be out late at night exploring art exhibits and seeing all the wonderful things Paris has to offer. The first stop we made was this funky exhibit at an abandoned train station by Gare Saint Lazare. They were bumping techno music and had three huge tvs playing crazy videos - it felt like I needed to be on drugs to fully absorb the meaning. We were directed into this warehouse and walked through to see another exhibit - a bunch of satelite dishes with crazy images projected on them. One had a man posing in this ball - it was all very crazy.
The next exhibit we visited was in the Madeleine Church. The entire church was pitch black except for a handful of blue illuminated sticks. There were performers high above the ground on ladders holding the poles. They were performing hymns in multiple languages but to hear the sounds (besides the background music) you had to go up and get ahold of one of the poles and put it up to your ear. It sounds really weird (and it was in a way) but it was really impressive to see. You can sort of see the poles in the picture to the right but it was hard to take a decent photograph.
The last stop we made was at the Tuileries garden. They had all these insane fire things in the gardens. There were various cast iron displays with terra cotta pots with fires in them. There were also some fire pits and obsecure displays of fire to illuminate the gardens. They had the ferris wheel running too.
Also, Saturday night someone broke into Musee d'Orsay and punched one of Monet's paintings. A bit odd but it happened.