31 May 2010

A Window in a Window

One of the windows in the Eglise St. Charles, the church we saw yesterday. When the small window is closed, the design is complete.

30 May 2010

The Orchid Tree

The orchid trees in Monaco are looking glorious at the moment - Bauhinia Variegata to be precise.

This one is at the side of the Church of St. Charles which is set back from the Boulevard des Moulins. The last photo shows the tree reflected in the school window.

29 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Heading Home

Thousands and thousands of people queue for trains to take them out of Monaco. Crowd control was brilliant - the police organised and polite as they let limited groups thru from the tunnel and into the railway station.

The Monaco Grand Prix is over for yet another year. If you've never been to Monaco at Grand Prix time, come one day. There's nothing quite like it.

Thanks so much to everyone who has followed this little series.

28 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Heads

We're looking down - from the 11th floor - on the teams who are waiting to welcome the winners. Their heads and colours make interesting patterns, don't they? In the first photo you can see the Red Bull team - bottom right.

And in the smaller photo, somewhere in the middle of that Red Bull throng is the winner, Mark Webber, getting a mighty lot of hugs. (click to enlarge)

27 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - the Television Screens

Whenever you are on the Grand Prix track, there will be a giant television screen not too far away. So whilst you are looking at what is going on before your eyes, you can also glance at a screen and see what the television coverage is at that moment.

In the photo below you can see a screen on the side of the stand that faces the Pit Lane. Note the number of people sitting on the hillside of le rocher, by the way.

In the main shot you see the winning drivers and the small photo shows a long shot of that same screen. Note the exit of the tunnel that leads down to the port.

With so many incidents this year, the screens were really useful as often we hadn't a clue what was going on other than we saw lights flashing around the track indicating the safety car was being deployed. A quick glance at the screen showed us a car broken down in the tunnel or that spectaclar mishap by Rascasse, for instance.

26 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Pink

Pink isn't just a color, it's an attitude!

~ Miley Cyrus

25 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - the Noise - Listen!

We are at the Monaco Grand Prix and this is the start of the race. In the pic above you see the cars leaving for their warm-up lap but in the video below you see and HEAR (!) what the actual start was like from our 11th floor balcony. Thanks so much to Andrew Gallagher, who was standing next to me and recorded this 39 second video.

24 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - the Renault Girls

It wouldn't be the Monaco Grand Prix without some pretty girls - here are two working for Renault.

This was taken at the end of the race. I'd just left the building and naturally I thought the crowd across the street were for me. Then I realised they were all waiting for Prince Albert who had been watching the race from the same building. Just as well I didn't wave...

23 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - the Prince and the Venturi

H.S.H. Prince Albert arrives in a Venturi Fétish to watch the Grand Prix and later to award the prizes. Prince Albert drove the car around the circuit before stopping in front of the Start/Finish line. Venturi specialize in electric and solar vehicles which fits very nicely with the Prince's views on ecology and care of our planet.

Offering over 300 hp (+220 kW) and a torque of 380 Nm, the electric motor allows Fétish to reach 100km/h in less than 4 seconds.

22 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - the Yachts, the Yachts

Of course another way to see the Grand Prix is from a yacht. In the main photo we are looking at the area just before the swimming pool. You may notice in the last photo some people prefer sunbathing to watching the race!

The smaller photo shows the track that comes out of the tunnel - and in the left hand top corner you can just see the sweep of road that goes up to Casino Square.

We'll see the bigger yachts another day.

21 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - The Visiting Scotsmen

There seemed to be an awful lot of Scotsmen at the Grand Prix...

The sculpture is called 'Fraternita' and was given to the late Prince Rainier in 1999 on the 50th anniversary of his reign by GLI Italiani di Monaco. Click HERE to see a better shot. The sculptor is Sauro Cavallini.

20 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Almost Ready to Roll

So many people mill around each car just a few minutes before the start - not just the mechanics but the rich and famous who are allowed on the grid. Above you see Sebastian Vettel's Red Bull and in the smaller photo, Lewis Hamilton's Mclaren-Mercedes and Felipe Massa's Ferrari.

In the photo below you see Mark Webber's Red Bull in pole position. 2nd is Robert Kubica's Renault and 3rd the one you see above, Vettel's car.

19 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - The Dishy Policemen

I've lived here for not far off 20 years and I've yet to see a Monegasque policeman that isn't to-die-for good looking! Maybe that's how they choose them...

This one is directing proceedings to allow the crowd to cross the road and enter the pedestrian street - rue Princesse Caroline.

The best way to get into Monaco at Grand Prix time is by rail - or helicopter. There are loads of extra trains and you arrive with no worries about parking, let alone getting into the Principality in the first place, which is pretty much impossible with half the place turned into a barricaded race track.

You leave the railway station with seemingly a trillion other people, past the sellers of Ferrari caps and t-shirts and find your way to the stands or to your apartment building if you are lucky enough to be invited - and as you walk you get more and more excited - the atmosphere sizzles.

And something else - on race days, the French police are drafted in to help - as per the gentleman below and in the small pic.

18 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - The Drivers' Parade

They look like Lowry's Matchstick Men, don't they? No matchstick men in this parade tho - just the greatest Formula One drivers in the world today, including 5 previous winners of the Monaco Grand Prix: Button, Hamilton, Schumacher (five times) Alonso (twice) and Trulli.

The red line you see in the smaller photo is the Finish Line and that square white building in the foreground of the same photo is where the winning driver will go to receive his award from Prince Albert.

And if you'd like the see the Ferrari Dog, please click on the link.

17 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Aussie Rules

The Monaco Grand Prix is sensory overload. That glorious harbour, those amazing yachts, the beautiful people on the terraces and then of course there are the cars, the colour, the noise - yes don't forget the noise - but it's all part of the excitement as the cars roar by. You blink and they are around the next bend. What a day.

Well we all know the winner and here you see him - one very happy Mark Webber. He now leads the driver's championship.

The smaller photo shows the cars a second after the start as they race towards Sainte Devote and below, well there it is, the port of Monaco putting on a show. More tomorrow...

16 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Flavio's Force Blue

This is former Renault team boss, Flavio Briatore's little runaround. Following the Singapore scandal in 2008, he was banned from working in F1 until 2013, but he's been given special permission this year to enter the paddocks at the Monaco Grand Prix.

Force Blue is 207.5 feet long. The former owner was Roy Speer of the Home Shopping Network.

It's often hard to get a side view of the bigger super-yachts in Monaco's port as they are moored tight up next to each other but I happened to be in the port the other day, whilst there was no other boat alongside Force Blue. The guy in the smaller photo was whizzing about on his little craft organizing where boats were to be moored, checking papers and so on.

I'm off to the Grand Prix today - photos tomorrow.

15 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Getting past the Barriers

Monaco is encased in steel. Above you see the barrier to just one apartment building on the port - we are at the rear of Palais Heracles. If you click HERE you will see the ticket that everyone needs if they are to enter any building along the race circuit. Your name must match that on the official list held, in this case, by the two ladies you see above.

This is where I'll be going on Sunday to see the race - 11th floor and overlooking the Start/Finish line. Lucky me, eh? But don't worry I'll take pics to share with you on Monday. Don't forget to watch it on television - there is no Grand Prix race like the glorious Monaco Grand Prix.

In the other photo you see one of the barriers in the casino gardens. Obviously these gates will be closed early on all race days.

14 May 2010

68th Grand Prix de Monaco - Flower Power

All roads lead to the Principality of Monaco this weekend for the 68th Grand Prix. We are at the roundabout at St. Roman which is where Monaco meets France on its Eastern border. I'm standing in Monaco and photographing France (most obvious in the smaller photo)

And to greet the visitor, why a Formula One car made of flowers, of course.

13 May 2010

ART MONACO - the Kiss

Last day at ART MONACO although we may pop back from time to time as there is more fascinating art to show you from this fabulous exhibition. We are leaving because it's Grand Prix time!

I don't know the name of artist whose work is shown above, but I recall all his paintings featured Spiderman - presumably that's Brezhnev being kissed?

In the photo below you see the glorious work of the Armenian artist, Vahram Davtian. This is called Red Circus. This artist is represented by the Noah's Ark Art Gallery in Lebanon.

12 May 2010

ARTMONACO: The Lady with the Fishnet Tights

All the art displayed today is represented by the Cain Schulte Contemporary Art Gallery in Berlin. In the top photo you see snippets of the work of Lars Theuerkauf and in the smaller photo and the one below, you see the paintings of Chris Leib.

The lady with the fishnet stockings was a visitor.

11 May 2010

ARTMONACO - Girl with the Fish in her Hat

She intrigues me - I love this painting - and so wish I knew the name of the artist. I thought I was being clever by photographing the signature but it's impossible to read. If anyone knows, tell me and I'll credit the gallery and of course the talented artist.

P.S: Thanks so much to Robyn Gordon of ArtPropelled who told me that the artist is Lisa G and the painting is called The Black Ribbon. You can visit Lisa G's blog to see more of her beautiful work, by clicking on the link. Thanks Robyn! Lisa G is represented in France by Galerie d'Art le Cameleon in Antibes.

10 May 2010

ARTMONACO - the Discussion

The night of the vernissage. Is one the artist and one a buyer? Is one the owner of a gallery and the other the artist? Will we ever know?

09 May 2010

ARTMONACO - Living World

This is a small portion of a large sculpture called Living World Series by the Taiwanese artist, Ju Ming. It was bought to ARTMONACO by the Kalos Gallery in Taipei, Taiwan.

08 May 2010

ARTMONACO - Three Glasses of Wine

Two men, three glasses of wine. I'm sorry but I don't know the artist - not shown in the catalogue.

07 May 2010

ARTMONACO - the Art of Roman Shustrov

I loved this sculpture. In fact I loved everything on offer by this Antibes Galerie d'Art le Caméléon.

This sculpture is by the Russian artist, Roman Shustrov, and is made of papier maché.
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