Monday, 19 September 2011

Dieulefit (Dieu Le Fait- God made it)

Roland Dutel belongs to an arts movement known as 'arts singulier' he sells  work through galleries but otherwise he is an untrained outsider artist .His home is also an arts gallery/ installation. I saw this place and couldn't believe my eyes. George was marching on towards the main street and a certain glass of wine. On the way back I spoke to Roland just to say I liked his home and noticed he was munching his baguette and with key in the door trying to escape. I wished him Bon Appetit and left him be. He seemed very nice. It says ring the bell on his door to visit his exposition, I only really noticed this later. I will go and visit him next time.

Dieulefit in Drome Provencal is a small lively artist's town. The population is at around 3000 and it is at 400m altitude. There is an old part wrapped around the side of a hill, a maze of narrow stone cottages some with small courtyards. We went on a little tour around that led us to 15th Century houses, with 3 old fountains a huge tunnel conecting the buildings at the the back of the high street and a clock tower built in the
16th century. There is a long street below the older part,built on the foundations of a medieval street, made up of cafes, ateliers, potters shops, craft shops galleries etc. At the end of this is a cafe on a roundabout that seems to be the place to catch up and sip wine.
This is the garden of the artist Roland Dutel

This was outside the artists house above. 

A watering can calling all those who respond to such things outside a potters workshop, here was a strange collection of things including  
a shop mannequin in a bath,  old iron bed heads welded together to create a small cafe seating area and a little arrangement below.

For a small town there are an enormous amount of potters, I read 30, taking advantage of naturally occurring clay. 

This tall houses here face the market place and someone has busily gathered river stones and created a zen garden.

Dwelling here is compact, convivial, probably a little dark  with a few pot plants outside to create a little originality. These villages were built in the 9th and 10th century, largely abandoned in the 19th Century in favour of the less harsh plains but then reinhabited by the 60's .

This is the island as you enter the village recognising the pottery tradition rather artily.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Saint Andre de Rosans

This is the entrance to the village opposite the tower is a milking shed and behind
 the shed a ruined abbey.

Monday, 12 September 2011

This was Bourdeaux. It's between Vercors and Provence. Population is falling. At the moment I think it's around 900.

I love this shade of pink. My friend Fi had a motorbike this colour,she painted it herself!!

It must be amazing to live in a house that looks like it's Medieval. I just wish I could have a look inside some of these houses. I did get some pictures of open doorways and a few creaky looking stairs. 

Surrounded by lavender fields. From here there was a garden and small house for sale. 

This is the only access to these houses. Some have balconies, you can just see one on the middle house.  

Hollyhocks everywhere, I have some seeds to remind of my trip. I collected a lot of seeds this time. 

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Travelling along through towards Die along crazy hairpin bends and over limestone mountains. We stopped for lunch  and while we were resting an old school VW camper came passed, lots of motorbikes a girl on a scooter, going up to where I couldn't imagine, and a couple of vintage sports cars.

This was one of the first villages we stopped at. It was becoming a little too hot to be driving along  in the heat of the day.    This is Portaix on the Drome, Rhone Alps. The population is tiny at under 200. It feels a bit forgotten, although some cyclists dropped by while we were having a look around. There was a builder and North African music wafting about from a flat.

Die produces sparkling wine.Unfortunately the little bar was closed in Portaix.

Large rock pot plinths.

I love these narrow streets and buildings.