11.7.11

Along Rue Oberkampf

Rue Oberkampf is an ordinary street in the 11th arrondissement, which during the 18th and 19th century developed with a lot of small industries and was inhabited by their workers. Today, there is an architectural and social mix, with some old, disappearing activities, some popular bars and restaurants…

There is a place on Rue Oberkampf, where urban artists are allowed to “perform” in an official way. A large wall is since a couple of years officially dedicated to urban art. Every ten or fifteen days you will see a new decoration. Behind this is an association called the M.U.R. (see link to their site) (I’m a member), sponsored by the City of Paris, Centre Pompidou, Cartier, Canal+…
Watching a “performance” the other day, I made a little walk in the immediate neighbourhood and discovered some nice “passages”, alleys, more particularly the “Cité du Figuier” (fig-tree). There are many similar sites here and elsewhere in Paris. You must learn to look to the right and the left and push some gates.







The “Cité du Figuier” used thus to be full of small workshops and to be inhabited by the workers. It has definitely a lot of charm, although the workshops today are more linked to art, publishing, architect offices…
As you can see from the top photo, people who work or live here seem to have adopted bikes as a major means of transportation. The bikes are parked under the fig-tree.
In some porches you can find some old signs of previous activities and also some new illustrations.
Entering the alley, you will pass in front of the little home of the “gardienne”. Only the cat observed me.
Here are some more pictures from other alleys in the neighbourhood…
… some with an even stronger past industrial aspect.

22 comments:

Olivier said...

merci pour le lien, je ne connaissais pas l'association "the M.U.R." c'est vraiment genial et superbe comme creation, j'adore

BellaVida said...

What a great post. I love seeing the colors of the buildings, flowers and the vibrant green plants contrasting with the cobblestone. Looks like an interesting place for a walk.


Bella Vida by Letty
Have a great day.

Thérèse said...

Moins lourds que les velibs!!!
Je n'ai malheureusement pas pu cliquer sur tout sur le site MUR mais l'idee est bien sur formidable.
Le quartier fait super sympa et j'irai peut-etre trainer la-bas grace a toi un jour. Il y a des theatres de quartier dans le coin si je me souviens bien mais ma memoire apres tant d'annees...

daneastside said...

cool pics, nice work. Looking forward to the next one.

Adam said...

My neck of the woods! Definitely lots to explore around here, and you've made some nice discoveries as usual.

Starman said...

I would love to be able to walk like that again.

Synne said...

I love the bikes and the old signs of past industrial activities! This kind of post always make me want to go treasure hunting in the alleys and arcades!

Bagman and Butler said...

I think it must be fun to be you. You bring so much to your blog everytime you take your eyes for a walk.

Vagabonde said...

J’aime bien toutes ces petites allées et impasses qui nous montrent un univers caché. Il faut avoir le temps de flâner à Paris pour découvrir toutes ces merveilles - merci Peter de nous les montrer.

ParisBreakfasts said...

Enfin.
A much needed guide to the CATS of Oberkamph!
And Oberkamph in general
Big merci Peter
a well-kept secret

JM said...

What a lovely area, Peter. And the wall for 'performances' surely deserves a visit now and then.

Montreal Photo Daily said...

I really love how the locals beautify their surroundings with the potted plants and flowers. Wonderful.

I will definitely try to remember your advice: You must learn to look to the right and the left and push some gates. Very true because I'm lacking in this dept.

Thanks Peter. Wonderful post.
Cheers from Montreal.

Cergie said...

La rue Oberkampf n'est pas une rue ordinaire, elle est surtout très, très longue et elle grimpe ; ces vélos sont la preuve qu'on est plutôt dans le bas, non ? Parceque lorsque cela descend il faut remonter et c'est dur.
Notre fils habitait la rue Crespin du Gast l'avant dernière qui donne dessus, tout en haut.
(Merci d'avoir regardé / la passerelle Mornay, il n'y avait son nom nul part ni sur les plans sur place ni même sur la passerelle elle-même)

Ruth said...

I agree with Bagman. I was thinking something like that when I was reading. I imagine that you have explored more, learned more, because of the blog. It is a tremendous education for all of us. We're lucky! But I also think that you are lucky. :-)

I appreciate how these alleys are softened with much green life. Also, the inhabitants are 'green' too.

I very much like the older faded art. Lovely.

claude said...

Je ne peux pas dire que j'aurais du mal à la reconnaître cette rue car quand j'ahitais dans le 11è j'étais trop petite mais je me souviens de ce nom de rue. La cité des figuiers me plait beaucoup, et les autres allées aussi. On imagine pas que Paris recelle de tant de trésors.

Ash said...

Nice alleys and buildings. Oh, and I LOVED the cat!

Jeanne said...

I most definitely need to look right then left! These are wonderful finds. Thanks for sharing.

Pierre BOYER said...

Un très beau quartier...

Pierre

Shammickite said...

The alleys are charming and I can understand why everyone prefers bikes to cars, for one thing, there's nowhere to park and who would want to battle Paris traffic every day? Lovely post. I wish I was in Paris to explre the lanes and alleyways with you, Peter!

hehehe the word verification password today is "tripe", a word used in UK to mean a load of rubbish... your blog posts are definitely not "tripe"! :-)

Trotter said...

Voila the famous M.U.R.!!

Bish Bosh Bash said...

I’ve just watched all the ‘Le M.U.R.’ wall art videos at Rue Meurt. Fascinating. I love voyeuring these street artists at work with a passion. If, like you, I lived in Paris, I would have to get behind Le M.U.R. myself.

Dominique Larrivaz really rocks. Nice to see it has the full blessing of La Mairie de Paris as well!

“Come on then ‘Banksy’, where are you? Stop hiding in the shadows of mystery & curiosity, come and play at the party with all the big street kids.”

Rue Oberkampf looks like quite a hidden haven of relative peace and urban tranquillity.

(And ‘thank you’ for signing into my ‘Blogette’ recently Peter. Your presence is much valued and appreciated. Bienvenue!)

G@ttoGiallo said...

From Oberkampf to Montmartre: "Je vous salue bien bas!"
Next time you come in my fief, take a look at 2 other great alleys (Le Figuier being the nicest), #115 and #154 in Oberkampf.
Great holidays to you in a wormer place than Paris...