Nantes – not too shabby.

Saturday 15 June 2019

I made a good call again, picking the out of town free aire instead of the one in the city of Nantes and paying 13€ for less. After a pleasant ride along the River Erdre, which joins the Loire in the city centre, I went to the renowned art gallery.

Purpose built in 1801 it had an extension added, the Cube,

and the character of each building reflects the work housed. The classical collection was the usual mix of religion, allegory, still life, landscapes and portraits, but the contemporary work had much to enjoy.

I liked this sculpture, Faun,

and this clever use of branches,

but I forgot to take a picture of the cards and can’t remember the artist. Doh!

A third space, Chapelle,

held an exhibition of video and photography by Romanian artist Mircea Cantor. This, Holy Flowers,

a kaleidoscopes of guns, and I particularly liked this,

called, The Hand of the Artist.

Nantes Cathedral is just across the road from the gallery,

and a step away from that lies Le Château Des Ducs De Bretagne,

which has a striking courtyard,

with the Cathedral in the background,

and, what you wouldn’t expect,

a 12m high slide down the outside.

This was the first insight into the evolving character of Nantes. It’s own tourist information describes the town as having been “a bit dreary”, so it embarked upon projects with architects and artists to bring the city to life.

Just across from the Château Des Ducs was a plaza, and a shallow pool in which kids were running around,

and a band was playing,

Just down from the gallery was Jardin Des Plantes.

A park, it has a giant’s garden for kids,


and fun pieces like this bench,

and this fine fellow.

From what I’ve gathered from the weighty city guide, I’ve barely scratched the surface. I expect a busy day tomorrow.

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