26 November 2009


When I play petanque well, its always a bad sign as it means that I haven't been spending enough time in my studio. Fortunately for my work, I hardly play at all anymore. This footage is from the summer 2008.

I discovered boules within my first month of arriving in France back in the early 70's as student. I had met some people in the flea market in Aix and was subsequently (par la suite) invited to a sunday lunch where boules was played in the afternoon. I learned two things in those days: One was boules, (better known as Pétanque for the southern half of the country) the other; the amazing generosity (générosité) of the people here. Eventually, most of my sundays for the rest of that year were spent at various (divers) homes where I was exposed to the art of french hospitality. As Hemingway once said about Paris in the thirties; it was indeed a moveable feast. Each sunday lunch was at a different home. I was given a great gift, and not unlike a set of boules in the back of the car, it is something which I have since taken with me everywhere I go. How could I have not learned the deceptively simple art of preparing a meal, however modest, and inviting someone in to share it? It sounds so banal, and yet, it was always the glaring social grace which had eluded my upbringing (mon éducation).

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