Paris Book Review: France is a Feast

From regular contributor Betty Guernsey:

France is a Feast: The Photographic Journey of Paul and Julia Child”, recently published by Thames & Hudson, tells the pictorial story of the couple’s life in Paris, Marseille, and the countryside of France between the years 1948 and 1954.

The Childs moved to Paris in 1948, where Paul was cultural attaché for the U.S. Information Service, among his many assignments meeting and mounting exhibits for the photographic greats in Paris at the time – Henri Cartier-Bresson, Brassai, Robert Capa.

The couple’s meanderings through their adopted city and its surrounding countryside were duly captured through the eye of Paul as he developed his skills as a talented photographer in his own right. Rarely did he leave the house without at least one camera (including a hefty Rolleiflex) slung over a shoulder.

What wonderful shots of Julia – all 6’ 2“ of her, and as slim as a willow – leaning over a balcony in Strasbourg (1956); Fishermen in a Boat on the Seine (1950); Julia on a staircase on the Quai de la Loire (1950); sardine-like boats by the Pont Louis-Philippe (1949); Mother and Child, Marseille (1953); and the incredibly racy Julia on the Telephone, Aubazaine (1952)!

Most of the work is in black-and-white; just as fascinating, though, are the handful of candid-camera shots, some of them in color, many of Julia in her early French kitchens.

The book in itself is a feast.

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