Ready to explore the hidden side of Paris? This weekend is the annual Paris Face Caché with visits under three categories: “L’Inédit”, “L’Interdit”, and “Artistiques”. Some are free, some are paid (€9-€15), reserve your spots rom January 14th, it fills up fast! See the full program here.
Through February 3
After having hung hundreds of white spheres in a New York City park, the Austrian artist Erwin Redl has unveiled his latest work, “Light Matters” at the Fondation EDF, a labyrinth on two floors composed of thousands of LED lights oscillating between red and blue as you walk past them, detecting your body movements. Free entry, 6 rue Recamier, 6th, M° Sèvres-Babylone, open Tues-Sun noon-7pm.
The 12th edition of the Festival au Fil des Voix features some of the best World Music singers from all over the world. “The festival Au Fil des Voix aims to defend musical diversity by offering more than just a concert: on stage, there are new encounters, sometimes daring, natural or unforeseen; transcultural dialogues, reflections of the artistic wealth of the world.” This year there will be 12 exceptional concerts: the opening night at La Cigale, evenings at the Bal Blomet, the Studio de l’Ermitage, L’Alhambra and the closing night at the Trianon. Tickets €15-45, multi-concert passes available in the French version of the site only.
French labor unions have called for a 24-hour nationwide strike on Tuesday February 5th. In Paris, expect transport disruptions and possibly closed tourist sights (check Twitter accounts for latest news from the Louvre, Eiffel Tower, etc). A march will take place from Hôtel de Ville to Place de la Concorde at 2pm.
The Chinese New Year celebrates the Year of the Dog on February 16th with several events around Paris all weeklong, including the big Chinese New Year Parade in the 13th arrondissement (the largest Chinatown district in France) on February 25th starting on Avenue d’Ivry. There are also events in the 3rd arrondisselent and Belleville district. See the full schedule here.
February 6 & 13
SOS Help, the confidential English listening line in Paris, needs volunteers for the coming season. If you’re interested, you only need to attend one of the information sessions in February, 7pm at the American Church of Paris (65 Quai d’Orsay, 7th). Potential listeners should live in the Paris area and be available for 15 months. The first training session is all day on Saturday 9th March and is mandatory for Listeners. The following evening sessions are 25th March, 16th April, 16th May and 3rd June. For more info visit their website.
Starting February 7
Tickets go on sale today for Solidays (June 21-23, 2019), a huge music festival to raise awareness of the continued fight against AIDS/HIV. You can buy 3-day passes for only €39: but act fast, because once these run out, they go up in increments of 10 up until €89.
If you live in Paris and can’t stop yourself from buying houseplants (either because you’re creating your own urban jungle chez vous or because you keep killing the ones you already have), Plantes pour Tous is for you! They have Grandes Ventes de Plantes one weekend each month in towns all over France where houseplants (including succulents and cacti) are sold for €2, €5 and €10. They also sell large houseplants for €15-€50, the largest which you can pre-order online to pick up at the sale. As there is always a huge number of people, get there the first day if possible and be patient if there’s a long line, it’s worth it! This weekend’s Paris sale is at the Atelier Basfroi (11th) from noon-7pm.
Sinfonietta presents two enchanting evenings of chamber music by Ludwig von Beethoven (Trios Op 70 N° 1 and 2), featuring the Trio Zadig: Boris Borgolotto, violin; Marc Girard-Garcia, violoncello; Ian Barber, piano. “Our Cocktails and Conversations create a blend of culture and privileged conversations, chamber music and excellent wine, offering a unique experience to our guests.” The February 8th concert will be in a charming private residence in the 14th arrondissement, and Saturday, February 9th will be at Reid Hall – Columbia Global Center (6th). Tickets €25, reserve your places online.
Want to watch French films (but with English subtitles)? Lost in Frenchlation is holding their V-Day comedy night with an English stand-up comedian followed by a screening of “Premières Vacances” with translated subtitles at Club L’Etoile (17th). The bar opens at 6:30pm, comedy show from 7:30pm, and the film at 8pm. Tickets €15, reserve your space online here.
Through February 19
The annual winter sales, aka Les Soldes. Honestly, the rules about when and how sales can take place in France have essentially made the sales irrelevant. There are sales all of the time now (often called “promotion” or “7 Jours BHV” or something like that), and websites and shops that do “ventes privées” which are open to anyone. But if you like standing in long lines and wrestling for that one pair of shoes in your size, you’ve got five weeks to enjoy the chaos.
“A Celebration of Khalil Gibran” is a special cultural event in partnership with the Embassy of Lebanon and The American Cathedral in Paris around the Paris book release of Paul-Gordon Chandler’s new book on the Lebanese born poet-artist Khalil Gibran titled IN SEARCH OF A PROPHET: A Spiritual Journey with Kahlil Gibran. Chandler will take the listener on a fascinating journey through all-embracing nature of Khalil Gibran, the early 20th century Arab American poet-artist, best known as the author of The Prophet. There will also be special musical performances with lyrics of Gibran’s poetry. The program will be followed by a reception and book-signing. Free event, but because of limited space you need to reserve your tickets here.
Starting February 22
The immensely popular Atelier des Lumières is reopening from February 22nd with three new immersive exhibits: “Van Gogh: Starry Night”, “Dreamed Japan: Images of the Floating World”, and “Verse”, a “hypnotic and metaphysical journey” in the Atelier des Lumière’s Studio. Tickets are already on sale, and they tend to sell out quickly (they’re sold for specific dates and times to reduce bottlenecks), €14.50 for regular tickets and discounts for students, families and seniors.
Starting February 23
Escape the crowds by skipping Versailles on your next trip and heading up to the magnificent Château de Chantilly instead for the reopening of the newly-restored Private Apartments of the Duke and Dutchess d’Aumale (the last of the Bourbon-Condé line of French princes). Created in the 16th-century Renaissance wing of the château, these apartments installed in 1845 are the only fully-intact example of interior decor from the July Monarchy. There are three tours each day (in English at 11:30am), for €5 (in addition to the entrance ticket),
Through March 2
BORDALO II (aka BORDALO “Segundo”), one of the biggest names on the international street art scene, is back in Paris for a special show of 30 of his wild animal sculptures created from recycled plastic garbage to show the devastating effects of our trash on nature. “Accord de Paris” takes placein a 700m² exhibition space in the 13th arrondissement, hosted off-site by the Galerie Mathgoth, 10-12 avenue de France, 13th, M° Bibliothèque or Quai de la Gare). Free entry, Tuesday-Saturday 2-7pm.
Plan Ahead for March Events
Other Paris Calendar Links
▪ For French Theatre with English surtitles: Theatre in Paris
▪ For general events around Paris (including sports): Que Faire à Paris?
▪ For mainstream events visit the Paris Office of Tourism