Sunday, 12 September 2010

An evening with Coco Chanel


I've just added a few links (see right) for upcoming events and talks that I'm doing this autumn. The first is at Waterstones in Kensington High Street on September 23rd; it starts at 7pm, so I do hope some of you may be able to come.
PS. Have just been contemplating gorgeous costumes and stirring music in 'Coco & Igor'. Can modernism be made into a movie? Not sure, but Mrs Stravinsky looks ravishingly consumptive, the re-enactment of 'The Rite of Spring' is intriguing (and call me shallow, but it's easier to follow than Resnais's L’année dernière à Marienbad, which had wonderful little black dresses by Coco Chanel, and an almost incomprehensible plot; not that narrative simplicity was ever a preeminent feature of the French New Wave). Half a century after Chanel designed for Resnais, the French cinema industry has attempted to lure her ghost out of the shadows of a mysterious past, and into the arc lights. Anna Mouglalis gives a harder-edged version of Chanel than Audrey Tautou in 'Coco Avant Chanel', and an altogether different perspective on the much-disputed narrative of her love life. Naturally, I remain intrigued by the endless reflections of La Grande Mademoiselle...

11 comments:

Lilacs In May said...

Will check those dates out, thank you.
Walking amongst the blackberries and the sloes with my sister she was telling me about her daughter's homework - an English lit survey.
She told me she had mentioned you in her list of her top 5 favourite authors.

I had a sly smile... her book's on order for Christmas!

kairu said...

The other day I was watching an interview with Louis Malle, from 1964 (incidentally, two years before 'Marienbad' the luminous Jeanne Moreau wore Chanel for 'Les Amants,' a cinematic love letter to a leading lady if there ever was one). He had this to say about the French Nouvelle Vague:

‎"About 20 first films made up what was called the New Wave. 2 or 3 could almost be considered masterpieces. 10 or so were failures. And the films in between were very interesting, because they were a breath of fresh air. They had the insolence and the truth that we all know in our youth. The problem is to create the se...cond or third films, and then a body of work."

The first film, he said, is like the first novel, made or written with passion, abandon, youth.

Claire * Lola Is Beauty said...

Hi Justine

It was so lovely to meet you this afternoon at Claridges and hear your story of writing the book. Thank you again for inviting me. Now I've started reading it and looked more at all the pictures I can't stop poring over it.

Claire

Justine Picardie said...

Am struggling with my recalcitrant blog tonight -- it keeps losing my responses to everyone, which is infuriating. (Anyone else here believe in the adverse effects of Mercury Retrograde?). Anyway, thanks so much to Claire for the lovely post on Lola Is Beauty. Very much looking forward to meeting more bloggers and readers and friends at Waterstones Kensington High Street next week: Thursday September 23rd at 7pm. (Spread the word!).

Christina @ Fashion's Most Wanted said...

Dear Justine, it was fantastic to meet you yesterday afternoon. I really enjoyed hearing you talk about the book. I can't wait to start reading it.

I was already planning to do a post about Chanel's apartment before I got your inviation so I've put it on straight after your post.

I'm no writer, so please let me know if there's anything you'd like to change.

Best wishes, Christina x

http://fashionsmostwanted.blogspot.com/

Justine Picardie said...

Christina, thanks for the lovely post -- it was really nice to meet you, and to discover your fabulous blog. Hope to see you again at one of the forthcoming events -- perhaps at Waterstones on September 23rd, or the V&A on October 15th? I'm looking forward to the Ballets Russes exhibition, not only because of Chanel's links with the Ballets (though obviously that is a draw). I'm going to talk about the V&A about Chanel's relationship with Diaghilev and Stravinsky -- which is an extraordinary tale...

Exsoteric said...

Justine, thank you so much for yesterday afternoon - it was great to meet you. I hope to see you again very soon as I plan to make it along to the V&A next month.

Cannot put the book down!!

Xenia.

Justine Picardie said...

Thanks so much. See you at the V&A -- and really glad that you're enjoying the book!

Lazywell said...

I wonder if you're politely damning the Coco & Igor film with carefully selected praise. I personally found it woefully ponderous: hardly a smile to be seen throughout the whole film, and even the love scenes became rather desultory as the film developed.

I dare say I'm not expecting anything too racey from your book, but I'm confident that it will be markedly more pacey, and certainly more insightful.

Justine Picardie said...

I thought Coco and Igor was striking in its surface appearance, but aside from the music -- and that was spectacular, as you would expect from a Stravinsky score -- uneasy listening.

oxford-reader said...

My Amazon order has dispatched, I've just bought a V&A ticket and I'm just about to buy a Laura Ashley jumper .... what a lovely evening!