Arts Abroad: Art History in Southern France, Part 2

August 3, 2010

One in a series of occasional dispatches from SVA’s Summer Arts Abroad programs. This dispatch was sent by student Shannon Broder.

Our last full day in France was by far the most exciting. Our first stop was St. Remy, where we visited the mental hospital where Vincent Van Gogh committed himself at Saint-Paul-de-Mausole. The grounds of the hospital were absolutely beautiful, but it was hard not to get an eerie feeling while walking through old patients rooms. After St. Remy we traveled to Les Baux, a huge fortress that was literally carved out of the top of a mountain. We climbed to the highest tower and were able to look out for miles; the view was breathtaking.

Our final stop for the day was Cathedrale D’Images, an old cathedral that had been carved out of a quarry. What made this cathedral unique however was that it had been transformed into a modern art exhibit, with images and films being projected on every surface of an otherwise pitch-black quarry. We were fully submerged in the art by this incredible installation. I am in love with the architecture, the art and the culture in Southern France, and I am really going to miss walking the streets of Avignon every day.

Images: Photos by Shannon Broder.

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