Joanne Wilson is an angel investor who bets on companies founded and run by women. She also founded the Women’s Entrepreneur Festival, an annual event in New York City dedicated to supporting a community of women entrepreneurs. In her blog, Wilson writes about investing, women in tech, food, art and other topics she is passionate about.
We had dinner with a friend and her family from LA last night. She asked me “what do you do every day”? Great question. We walk, we explore, we eat, we take a nap, we just enjoy the city.
Our day started at the Picasso museum. Currently there is an installation of Calder and Picasso. I have seen this museum through three renovations. It is one of the most amazing museums. The marble staircase with the a Calder hanging in the middle of the old sculptures that loop around the ceiling is just incredible.
This is one of my favorite Calder pieces from the show.
This painting Calder did in December 1955 in his studio in Roxbury CT showing various paintings in different stages of completion.
Love this sculpture of a girl skipping rope from Picasso. There is one piece in the show that is made of handle bars and a seat from a bicycle. Picasso had come home from a funeral of a friend and had imagined making this when he saw those two pieces. It gives you a bit of insight into how his brain thought…always in art.
We walked through the Marais stopping in one of our fave shops, Tom Greyhound, and did a bit of damage. But lunch was the height of the day at Mokonuts. Have been there a variety of times and always make it back when we are in Paris. The nicest people and the best food. This salad of small tomatoes, green beans and tiny tops of basil flowers, thyme and a bit of fennel seed and olive oil was just incredible. I kept trying to figure out exactly each spice in the sauce. It is all so fresh and simple.
Tuna with a pounded basil pesto over the top.
Skate wing over a ratatouille.
Chicken over a mixture of roasted carrots and mushrooms. Every plate we sopped up with their soft bread.
But the best is those cookies! Chocolate chunk, miso sesame, coffee and coco and tahini with ginger. WOW!
For dinner we met our friends late at Les Grand Verres which is a new spot in Palais Tokyo. It is really beautiful and probably a good lunch spot. What is nice about Palais Tokyo that Wed – Sat the museum is open from noon to midnight so a nice place to go before dinner.
To me, the best thing was having a martini. Most spots in Paris don’t serve liquor so this was a serious treat.
The Corbusier Foundation opened up the Studio-Apartment after two years of renovation. It is where he lived for three decades, 1935-1965. It is in the 16th Arrondissement.
Charles Edouard Jeanneret, aka Le Corbusier, lived at the top of the building he built with his wife, dog and housekeeper. He loved his dog so much that he built this bath just for his dog. Also that he coined his name Le Corbusier.
The building where he lives and which he built became a UNESCO site in 2016.
He was a man way before his time. The buildings, where his studio and apartment sits on the top straddling the both buildings, was delivered as vanilla boxes for each occupier to create their own space. Even how the background is essentially muted except for a wall or an angle for art that is painted with a bold color. It is these accents of color that are so brilliant.
He chose to live on the 7th and 8th floor although the lift only goes up to the 6th. He created an outdoor space up there at his own expense. He loved the views and planted a garden. Nobody back then lived on the top floors, they were essentially for the staff. The place is so modern but you really have to think about how most people lived in 1935.
It is a layout similar to how we live today. An open kitchen next to the dining room and the family room which is open. Outside you can see the pulley which is how he would get furniture and other large items such as art into the apartment. That walkway is right next to the maids room so she could leave her room and go directly to the kitchen.
Although known as an architect, he was never formally trained. He was an artist. You can see that throughout the apartment. There are so many brilliant concepts that if there was an architect involved they might work better. The vanity area for his wife is situated so that a chair can’t even get under the table.
The concrete dining room table was incapable of moving so he cut the carpet around it. There are many of these little things.
The family room. The couch juts out into the space and the carpet is too big for the room.
In the shower of the MBR you have to step up into and duck so you don’t hit your head.
He elevated his bed so that when you laid on it you got perfect views over the terrace but had to climb up to on boxes to get to sleep.
The guest room has a shower and a sink but no toilet. The beam that is wrapped is what brings heat in. Clever but I can only imagine the clanging all night long.
I did love how the studio had large round ceilings.
He created drop wood ceilings in areas that were more intimate such as his desk, or the family room.
It was really a treat getting the tour. We love architecture. Corbusier was a brilliant man and his impact will continue to be made centuries from now. He wrote that art, architecture come together with poetry and magic. He was an artist who disrupted architecture.
Episode 107: Accelerating Women in the C-Suite - Carolyn Childers & Lindsay Kaplan, Chief - SoundCloud (1763 secs long, 266 plays)Play in SoundCloud
We are moving into our summer bi-weekly podcast and taking a break today from Paris activities.
Chief Carolyn Childers and Lindsay Kaplan are the co-founders of Chief a private network focused on connecting and supporting female leaders with a mission to accelerate women’s presence in the C-Suite. Carolyn and Lindsay took inspiration from what they wish they had for themselves, and the result is an exciting new venture that’s challenging both of them in ways they never anticipated.
We are walking and walking and walking. Logging in up to 10 miles a day. No wonder we know Paris so well. Nothing beats walking. We are seeing people on the electric scooters everywhere but we prefer our feet.
So come along on our day. Most mornings we eat at home but we wanted to start the day out right and walked over to Cafe Flore. It might seem touristy but there are plenty locals there and it is the best breakfast. Those eggs, the baguettes, freshly squeezed OJ and really good coffee.
A stop in a gallery we go to again and again. Galerie Geraldine Banier. She was featuring two artists, Sylvie Mangaud and Rene Romeo Schuler. Love this meditation sculpture.
The 6th is filled with antique, vintage and art galleries. A new one just opened up called L’Atelier 55. Could become a standard stop.
Alex Katz has two pieces in the L’Orangerie right now. He has water lilies at his home in Maine. He never painted them because of Monet. But he finally did. He is 92 years old so the time might have been just right.
The Monet water lilies never get old. I always get emotional when I walk into these rooms.
In the Tuilleries there are a variety of statues in plots of grass that you can only admire from afar. Standing Woman by Gaston Lachaise 1932.
We walked up to the Champs D’Elysee. An area we never go into but Galleries Lafayette just opened up a new store there at the end of March. Was curious what they did with it. Grabbed a pic of Charles de Gaulle standing outside the Grand Palais.
It is a bold move to open up a new department store. Not sure I love the location but the store is really well done. A food hall in the basement that is simple, well curated with lots of chocolates. You can sit and have food from just a few sections of salads, cheeses and pates.
The other two floors are merchandised by designer and mixed together with items like a vase or a hat. What is worth noting is the designers that they chose to put in this store. All cutting edge nothing old. Many do small amounts like Noah. It is the new new. It speaks volumes about where fashion is going.
We went back to the 6th (this time we did not walk) for lunch at St. Germain Bistro. Had a salad. They do a nice job and sitting outside of a cafe is a treat.
Decided to walk up and down the streets in the 6th to see all of our favorite galleries. Librairie des Alpes is always a stop. Picked up this piece.
Back for a bit of a rest before heading out to dinner in the 5th. We went to Baieta. Quite good vs the night before at Tomy and Co which is not even worth posting about. A young chef, Julia Sedefdjian, cooking Mediterranean food.
This pork was top. Caramelized pork belly with mashed celeriac root, peanuts and an herb sauce. Divine.
I admit I could not stop eating the fennel butter. Wow.
We walked home. It is about 10pm. Seeing Notre Dame is so sad but truly amazing that this is all that was lost. It is at night where you really realize how big the loss is. The building lit up the sky and the street and the Seine. There is now a dark spot every evening.
We continued to walk over to Hotel Lutecia in the 7th. Just opened and renovated after a long long time. They have a really nice bar and is open late. Had an evening nightcap before walking home and falling into bed. Quite the day and the weather could not have been more perfect.
It was our second day doing the Biennale, day 1 we came in late and didn’t go see the shows. Going to the Giardini the first full day and the Arsenale the second day was totally the way to go. It was just pure luck on our end. This piece was on the walkway into the show. It pretty much says it all about the show. As Fred noted, I look through the world with this lens and have my entire life.
The Center of the Arsenale has pretty much the same artists as the day before so seeing them installed here with different work opens your eyes to each artist in a much larger way. Happy to see huge Zanele Muholi’s large photos throughout the show.
The Ed Atkins install takes about 1/2 of one area. It is quite amazing. There are videos highlighting crash course dummies, him constantly crying, sandwiches being assembled and disassembled highlighting corporate advertising. Opera costumes take over the space on racks. He depicts a pseudo-historic world of eternal ruin. Incredible.
Njideka Akunyili Crosby reflecting her experience of a Nigerian woman who at age 12 was part of the Nigerian diaspora and now lives and works in LA.
Teresa Margolles whose work reflects the tragedies of violence in Mexico. This is a dusty window with partial old posters of women people are looking for.
Jill Mulleady’s paintings of every day life depict different lives from those living on the edge to others who are ungovernable.
Nicole Eisenman’s sculptures. A new medium for her.
Neil Beloufa created video interviews with young soldiers from countries around the globe. You sat in these structures and heard their stories. I watched one from a Syrian soldier who left the countries Syrian Army and now worked for the New Syrian Army as a rocket launcher. He talks about how bad these people are yet how he has pride in his job. The leaders asked him to fire on protestors who they said were something they weren’t. These people were his family members. It as if the army’s of these places are enterprise companies paying people to work for them. Not sure how this ever changes. Extremely upsetting.
Zhanna Kadyrova works with ceramics and tiles. Here she created an entire outdoor market from flowers to vegetables to fruit. This is the meat section encouraging public interaction with the belief that the role of art is should be a commodity.
What is different at the Arsenale is the countries different pavilions bleed into each other through one building vs separate buildings. We liked this. The highlights here were the Family Album from Kosovo. During the war (1998-99) there were some photos taken of very young children that became synonymous with this war and in turn became part of the global media. The artist, Alban Muja, tracked down some of these children, now adults, to tell their stories and the impact those photos (that were out of their own control) and the war had on them.
Island Weather from the Philippines, from curator Tessa Maria T. Guazon and exhibitor Mark O. Justiniani. These photos were endless. If you took off your shoes you could walk over multiple photos surrounded by metal enclosures showing that we are all connected and that weather there has to do with decisions we make globally.
Ghana put together a mixture of artists highlighting Freedom. This is from Lynette Yiadom-Boakye called the Mighty-Mighty Lines.
Each piece from the artist El Anatsui was also part of the Ghana installation. All of these works are done in bottle caps and copper wire.
The architecture of these buildings are really beautiful.
The Indian pavilion, called A Time for Future Of Caring, was put together like Ghana with a variety of artists. Shakuntala Kulkarni made these iron and wood outfits showing that women live with an overwhelming sense of threat. That risk and the violation of their bodies is becoming an increasing concern.
She then took photos of herself in these pieces in regular surroundings. Really powerful.
We walked around to find the Lithuanian Pavilion which was a solo show in a totally different area. It was extremely quiet in this part of Venice, a true treat.
The install is incredible. This is what the artist wrote.
Here is the installation. You walk up the stairs and see the beach below.
That was the last of our art for the day. We had some pizza which was ok not great. We went to see a local glass artist but randomly we were able to check out the entire gallery yet nobody was there. The works are beautiful. We hope to get one shipped back to the states after connecting. Massimo Micheluzzi.
And then, we went back to our hotel, took a shower (the heat was really something), got on a boat, went to the airport, flew back to Paris and landed at 10pm. This is one of the many things I love about Paris in June. It is still light out at 10pm.
The first Biennale began in April of 1895 with almost 200,000 visitors. There are two main areas and then a bunch of outlying installations. The title this year is May You Live In Interesting Times focusing on artists who challenge existing times and habits.
We began the first day at the Giardini where I believe there are 29 countries participating. Each artist is represented by their country and shown inside a building set inside the gardens. The Belgian Pavilion was one of the first and definitely one of my favorites. The artists are duo Jos de Gruyter and Harald Thys. Folkloric figures of white people, some electronic, behind bars representing a society stuck in the past. It is called Mondo Cane.
The Central pavilion is filled with artists from around the globe who were chosen to be there. Nicole Eisenman, Morning Studio. I am a huge fan of her work.
Zhanna Kadyrova, called Second Hand from the Ukraine. She used second hand tiles from Venice to create clothing as the Ukraine has a long history of ceramic tile production. A process intended to erase all traces of the Soviet past.
Jill Mulleady, Swiss artist paintings.
Mexican artist, Teresa Margolles, a concrete wall that stood outside her school in Juarez, one of the highest murder areas in Mexico. She refuses to show violence but the aftermath of unresolved tragedies.
Guari Gill, an Indian photographer taking photos of people on the margins of India in Rajasthan. Gill commissioned artists to make paper mache masks representing real people enacting regular every day life in their neighborhood.
Njideka Akunyili Crosby from Nigeria who works in Los Angeles portrays domestic interiors and life of her and her family.
The Brazilian pavilion was pretty amazing with a movie of dancers reminiscent of West Side Story.
Above is an inside outside plane in the Polish Pavilion by Roman Stanczak.
Lots of art, lots of sweating and really interesting work. Most of the pavilions had video which is hard to capture for the blog but really great to see.
We have always wanted to go to the Venice Biennale. It happens every two years. The last time we were in Venice was 2007. Not much has changed but being here in cooler months is highly suggested. It is just hitting 80 but the humidity is a killer.
Someone suggested we take an architectural boat trip one day and so we did. We went for two hours with a guide when we arrived since we only had a few hours before dinner. Essentially a short history class. The years of 1300 and 1400 were peak. The city has not really changed must since then even though we all believe that it is just getting worse with climate change.
What has changed is the population and tourism. Only 53,000 people live between Venice and the outlying islands. That is down from 150,000 fifteen years ago. The city does take a beating from the 20m people who visit here annually. The canals are really shallow which is why the flat boats. It is a walking city which is why the low bridges. Boats are still handmade.
The food is nothing to write home about. We are hoping to be pleasantly surprised somewhere in the days to come. This was the lobster spaghetti from last night at Ristorante da Ivo.
We walked home prepping for the big art day ahead.
One of the founders I had the pleasure of backing has returned home to Paris. We got together for lunch at Balagan. I wondered out loud if Balagan was somehow related to Palomar in London. In fact it is. There is definitely an explosion of Israeli restaurants across the globe starting with Machne-Yahuda in Jerusalem. It has been a diaspora across New York City, London and Paris.
We had a smorgasbourg of plates to share. You honestly can’t go wrong with anything there. The tahini, bread and eggplant dish is a mainstay for the table. This salmon was one of my favorite dishes.
And then of course we walked heading directly to my favorite store. I love a store where I know I can walk in and then walk out with a few purchases every time.
Dinner was at the Clown Bar. This place has been on all of the lists and we finally made our way there. There are clowns on the ceiling and the bar. I would gather the clowns were here way before the restaurant. Natural wines at this spot too with an extremely creative modern menu. Not for the faint of heart as Veal Brain with Ponzu sauce is one of the dishes. We started with sardines (boquerones) marinated in a sweet savory olive oil and then covered with sauteed algae. This was incredible. Not exactly sure what was in the olive oil but the flavor seeped through the entire dish. The bread on the side was key for sopping up every single drop.
Not to get too crazy we went with the burrata, beet roots, apricot and basil. The basil was probably just picked. The entire dish just screamed “summer”. I am absolutely making this one at home in the months to come.
We had a raw fish dish that didn’t rock my boat but the Duck and Fois Gras Pie with dates and lemon is a must. Decadent is an understatement. Pieces of duck sitting next to creamy foie gras baked in a flaky crust with a whipped date and lemon mixture, almost like sorbet on the side. It is so over the top. Certainly not something I can eat often but what a serious treat.
We went with the cheese and salad for dessert before walking home. We constantly check how many steps we walk here. Our book would be called Paris in 10,000 steps. Last night we almost walked 8000 steps home and thank god. My feet were pounding but at least I worked a bit of that dinner off! Wow.
We are living longer. The concept of working all your life at one job and then retiring at 65 is becoming a thing of the past. Knowing that you could live to be 100 changes the landscape of ones career. Wouldn’t you want to take off ten years to raise your kids if you could? Wouldn’t you want the ability to have several different careers if you could? Wouldn’t you want to make sure you see more of the world if you could?
The Washington Post posted an incredible article called Changing Channels. Written by 8 journalists about 8 women who followed their personal quests that had been put on a back-burner after 50. Most women get overlooked and perceived to have less value in the work world at this stage of the game. Reality is this is when these women are worth more than anyone realizes. It is an article worth reading. Just made me smile.
Madonna turned 60 this year. She is the ultimate bad ass who has reinvented herself several times from pop icon to philanthropist to mother. The article in the NYTimes is absolutely worth the read. Once again, at 60, she is putting out music her own way. She was an inspiration from the beginning of her career and still is.
Both of these articles added to the thoughts I am having about what comes next? I have had at least 10 careers. I hope to live to be 100 so I have plenty left in me. I will continue to invest and be involved in the growth of companies but in what way? Is there a new way, is there something else out there that I could do that would be exciting? I don’t have to shift anything but it is something sitting in the back of my head.
I love that Madonna said at the end of the article. She said “Stop thinking, just live your life and don’t be influenced by society trying to make you feel some type of way about your age or what it is you’re supposed to be doing.” “We are a marginalized group, women. And just because it’s hard doesn’t mean you stop fighting against it or defying it or refusing to be pigeonholed or put in a box or labeled or told you can and can’t do things.”
I have led my life living outside of the box. I am not sure I could have done it any other way. It has worked for me. Reading about these 8 women who have stepped outside their comfort box after 50 made my day and makes me believe that women in the generations to come will follow suit. Be true to yourself and based on data if you could live to be 100, the world is seriously your oyster.
The unexpected treat in Paris is how many people are here that we know. We actually went for dinner in the 11th and bumped into a variety of people who we are seeing later in the week and others who were just randomly there. The world is small.
Our first night here we had dinner at Yard with a friend from London who scheduled a few meetings around us. Always a treat seeing him. He is a serious wine person so the natural only wine menu was not the best spot for him. The place is absolutely adorable with a wine bar next door. Large black paned windows that open to the street in intimate surroundings. The ultimate bistro. The food isn’t something to write home about but the vibe is wonderful. Grilled hake with mushrooms, tomatoes and a little vinaigrette.
Next day we got up and saw the semi-finals at the French Open. This is our second time going. A very well run event. We saw Federer vs Nadal. Nadal owns this court. He took Federer out in 3 sets.
We had drinks with Jessica’s friend who lives here before having dinner at La Condesa. The space is quaint with only 24 seats and a kitchen that fits barely 4. The young chef 32 year old chef, Indra Carrillo, won a Michelin star for his spot in 2019. His creative menu spans from his background starting with Mexico to London, Denmark, India, Italy Spain and France. The dishes sang Mexican meets Asian yet fully French. And the sommelier, she is incredibly knowledgable.
We opted for the wine pairing. Half-glasses. There were 3 starters. A corn chip topped with whipped goat cheese. Tasted a bit like a light Frito. A nice beginning that paired Mexico with France.
Zucchini tempura with chili flakes in a tiny forest.
This was served with the top on the cup. You take the top off and scrape into the cup small crunchy bits of Parmesan into a cucumber soup. A cool cream of cucumber soup with a dollop of cucumber sorbet that cools the soup. There is also a pickled cucumber slice that brings in a completely different flavor profile. I am not sure I have ever had a better palette cleanser. Brilliant dish.
Simple roasted radishes served in a thin green vegetable soup.
There were so many flavors happening in this dish from many countries but insanely subtle. Delicately wrapped agnolotti stuffed with veal served over a sauteed spinach. They pour a light chicken broth over this that has been infused with curry. It is really out of this world.
Grilled white fish with an elderflower brown butter sitting on top of a puree of white asparagus whipped with Parmesean and two thin slices of grilled asparagus on top. Simple and perfectly executed.
Pork so perfectly cooked that you don’t even need a knife to cut through it. Paired with a rich Israeli couscous made with a rich veal broth and a small piece of artichoke.
Dessert was as good as the main courses. Sweet strawberries served in a whipped yogurt and tiny pieces of melt in your mouth meringue. All of this is topped with roasted red pepper flakes that has this smoky flavoring. Wow.
Chocolate cream and ginger cream served with a ginger and sesame biscuit. We licked the plate.
Last but definitely not least the come out with a small jewel box. Inside reveals a mushroom that is essentially Paris Brest, a classic French dessert.
Every country came to the meal with France being the back drop. The menu is price-fixed. During the week you can choose from 3 to 4 courses but on the weekends it is 6 courses. We went on Friday and if there was an option we would have chosen less but I am so glad we didn’t have a choice.
We walked home raving about the meal. So nice to be back in Paris.