Apr 19, 2014

Street Art: Le Palet


One fine day I walk by and meet Pete the Street. As always, when I see somebody doing a beautiful painting of our neighborhood, I hope that they'll be some undiscovered talent who wants to sell me their gorgeous oil painting for a few hundred dollars. And, as always, the painters are recognized talents who will only be happy to sell me their gorgeous oil paintings for many thousands of dollars. Pete the Street, real name Peter Brown, exhibits in London among other places. But at least I can get this image -- at the source -- for free.

The very next day, I walk by and see another painter doing the exact same scene. Sadly, I'm rushing off with the kids and don't have time to find out her name, website info, or the cost of the finished painting. I'll just assume it was out of my price range, too.

It's fun to see the differences, and similarities, of two works done of the exact same scene. Frankly, even more than buying one of them, what it really makes me want to do is paint it myself. If only I were a painter, that is.


Of course there are bound to be painters, in Paris, on the pedestrian bridge and in the park itself, working on the classic view of the flying buttresses on the back of Notre Dame, from all angles, even when obscured by foliage.

But that doesn't mean it's the only place, or the only occasion, that we see artists. France is, after all, one of the world's great art destinations. In fact, sometimes it feels like all of Paris is one gigantic outdoor art studio. Here somebody works on a scene of my favorite alley in Paris, the Rue des Barres just over the Seine from us in the Marais.


Sometimes street art is both more literal and more ephemeral. This guy works on portraits in chalk outside the Centre Pompidou. Thank goodness for days without rain; I'd hate to see all this work washed away right away.


Le Palet, the raw goat's milk cheese made in Deux-Sevres, is not to be confused with Le Palet de Bourgogne, which is an orange washed-rind, pungent, cow's milk cheese from a different region. This Palet -- whether white or lightly-ashed gray -- is much milder in taste and stink. It's a lovely, thick-dry-creamy cheese with a mild goat flavor. It's lovely, and frankly I prefer it to its similarly-named orange cheese cousin.

It's only a lightly salted cheese -- with a slight savory twinge. Mostly, it feels fresh. Even the makers of this cheese describe it as a cheese that's great to teach children to learn to love high-quality goat cheeses. My kids like it. But then again, they are goat cheese fanatics by this point.


A "palet" may be a puck, but let's face it; it looks like the word palette, as in an artist's palette. It is shaped a lot more like a puck than a palette, however. If only there had been a paintbrush-shaped cheese. 


  1. I luff the Marais. You are lucky to live there.

    So much lovely food. Such superior People Watching. x


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