Photo of the Week

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The view from the Théâtre de l"Odéon at dusk. Photo: Françoise Deberdt-Meunier

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Paris Update What’s On

Links to events happening this week in Paris.

Left Bank gallery crawl
> Open house at 50 galleries for Art Saint Germain des Prés. Various venues, Paris, May 18-June 3.

Gold in galleries

ParisUpdate-CarreRiveGauche-Passage AH 0

“Passage” ((2017), by Aude Herlédan. At 1831 Art Gallery during Carré Rive Gauche.

> The Carré Rive Gauche, an association of Left Bank galleries, celebrates its 40th anniversary with an event called ExtrORdinaire, featuring gold in works of art. Various venues, Paris, May 18-June 3.

Literary evening
> The Nuit de la Littérature in Belleville and Ménilmontant presents 20 foreign authors reading their work in French. Various venues, Paris, May 27.

 English-language theater festival
> Paris Fringe returns for its second year of English-language theater and comedy. Various venues, Paris, May 18-28.

Hollywood glam
> Marilyn Monroe, Greta Garbo, Ava Gardner, Marlene Dietrich and more in classic films from Hollywood's Golden Age for the Glamour cycle. Forum des Images, Paris, May 3-31.

French film with English subtitles
> Lost in Frenchlation shows Etienne Comar’s Django, preceded by a themed cocktail party (€4.50). Studio 28, Paris, May 26.

Virtual reality
> Drop in on Saturday or Sunday from 2pm to 8pm for a free virtual trip at the VR Express festival. Forum des Images, Paris, through June 30.

Dance in historic sites
> Monuments en Mouvement offers free dance performances in national monuments like the Pantheon in Paris, the Abbaye de Cluny and châteaux. Various locations, through Oct. 21.

African culture festival
> The 100% Afriques festival showcases dance, theater, music, fashion, design, art, food and more from all over the continent. La Villette, Paris, through May 28.

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Hot Topics - Flash News

 

Objets Trouvés

What Once Was Lost Now Is Found

An employee stores some of the 500 objects turned in every day.


All is not lost for those whose pockets are picked in the Métro or who lose an antique earring in the street. Paris’s Objets Trouvés (Lost and Found) department is a clearinghouse for all the miscellaneous objects found in the public transport system, taxis, museums or stores, or turned in to the police by good citizens.

This year, the department is celebrating its 200th anniversary – two centuries of collecting, classifying, storing and finally disposing of the forgotten or stolen detritus of everyday life. Cell phones are a dime a dozen here – 30 or 40 are turned in per day, and the department has six or seven thousand of them on its shelves. Altogether, some 500 objects arrive daily. When it rains, umbrellas pour in. In the winter, the department receives an avalanche of gloves and scarves. Wallets – sans cash, of course – are common.

Only 25 percent of the objects turned in are returned to their owners. The rest are sold at public auctions or returned to the finder after a certain period of time (valuable objects are kept longer).

Some unusual items have been turned in over the years, including an artificial leg, a glass eye, three skulls, a funerary urn complete with ashes, a brand-new wedding gown, false teeth, a gold bar (returned to its happy owner), a chain saw, sabers and a Red Army hat. For their own amusement. the department’s 43 employees have put together a little private museum containing some of these items.

Tourists will be relieved to know that the department’s employees speak English. If you lose something, be prepared to provide precise information – the date, time and place of the loss and a detailed description of the object – to improve your chances of retrieving it.

Service des Objets Trouvés: 36, rue des Morillons, 75015 Paris. Tel.: 08 21 00 25 25. Open Mon.-Thurs, 8:30 a.m.-5p.m.; Fri., 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. www.prefecture-police-

paris.interieur.gouv.fr/demarches/

objets_trouves/premieres_

demarches.htm


Heidi Ellison

© 2005 Paris Update

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