The Presidentials in France: a psychological thriller

The psychological warfare continues between the candidates of the French elections’ first tour Sunday, April 22. The next and crucial election will take place on May 6. Both are during long week-ends wich makes the game even more thrilling, as many might have travelled away for the holidays. 


Four days before the first elections, the two main candidates – the socialist François Hollande and the sitting President, Nicolas Sarkozy – have an equal percentage of 27% each. The right-wing candidate, Marine Le Pen, managed at the last minute to collect the 500 names needed to be able to compete. She now has 15.5% of the votes. The leftist, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, has lately gained in popularity and is now up at 14.5%. The centrist, François Bayrou, comes just behind him with 10%. The big loosers are the Green that, with the Norwegian Eva Joly, have steadily lost the voters’confidence and is now down to a low of just one or two percent. But the main thrill comes with the 35% of voters that can still change their minds. They are called the “mobile voters”.

Paris palaces and their art fairs

The Grand Palais, the Palais de la Bourse and the Louvre yearly show art in their beautiful palaces: drawings, modern and contemporary art, design as well as photography.

Gallery Slott

Grand Palais:

Art Paris, Art Fair 2012, took place in one of Paris most beautiful buildings with its light shining through the glass roof, lightening the works exhibited. All types of art are presented but this year they had added design that only showed exclusive and numbered articles, created by some of the most renowned designers. One of those galleries was the Swedish-owned Slott. Paula Bjäringer – the proud owner – showed a pink carpet with rats “holy in India” running across it and Arik Lévy’s fabulous chandelier.


Illustrated Desert Sayings – or God before mankind.

Travelling in the Lybian desert, in Egypt’s Western part, is a metaphysical experience, where infinity meets God. The desert feels like God before mankind. It’s an uplifting experience of purity and eternity. Many hermites have discovered that the desert helps them in their meditations. Some still live in the desert albeit in monastries with a minimum of comfort but away from the busy daily lives of our hectic societies. To have had the opportunity of having a dip in this world of sand and stone, between heaven and earth, was a divine experience.

Marc Jacobs meets Louis Vuitton

Marc Jacobs conception of  Louis Vuitton’s women are that of modern, free and spontaneously elegant ones. At the Museum of Arts Décoratifs in Paris we can follow their relationship as well as the hate- and love-relationship between America (M.J.) and France (L.V.).


Louis Vuitton’s hatbox

The American Marc Jacobs:

Truly incarnates the “American dream”. His father died when he was seven, his mother remarried several times and he left home at the age of fifteen. His grandmother saved him and put him in Parsons School of Design in New York where his creativity got an outlet. The teachers notified him at an early stage and he won awards. From one fashion house to another, he soon came up with his own mark.

Strindberg and Parsons school in Paris

August Strindberg: the famous Swedish author is celebrated this year 2012 as it was one hundred years since he passed away. At the Swedish Institute in Paris, Swedish speaking pupils read aloud from his plays and an exhibition about him is shown. Linda Jarvin – the Swedish headmistress at Parsons school in Paris – houses Swedish students who are interested in art. The Swedish/French exchange in the art departmenet seems to be at its best.

Lycée Buffon:

“The study of the Swedish language started here already in 1945,” says Gabrielle Rozsaffy who has been teaching Swedish for almost twenty years now.

Even my sons went to the Lycée Buffon, as is the school’s name, to polish up their Swedish grammar and read Swedish literature. Besides the language, Gabrielle initiates them in current news that she picks up from Swedish newspapers but she also includes lessons in history and civic education. “I’m a bridge between Sweden and France for my pupils,” she says.