Two southern gals share their travels in Paris and Honfleur- following the Impressionists
Question and Answer with Millie Wilcox and Cheri Leavy
Compiled by Cheri Leavy
Favorite color you saw in Paris and Honfleur:
Millie: The Honfleur color of the sky in the morning and evenings that is rose with a touch of yellow and it goes down to the sea with little demarkation between the two.
Cheri: Boudin grey as it is far from dull.
Favorite aspect of Monet’s jardin and home in Giverny:
Millie: All of the flowers and shrubs and trees coming together forming an explosion of jewel colors. I also love the estuaries in Monet’s water garden with the water lillies’ reflections next to the Japanese foot-bridge.
Cheri: I absolutely loved the wild flowers everywhere but I loved the dining room from the paint color to the porcelains and paintings.
What is the most significant thing you learned on the trip:
Millie: Reflections on past visits to France helped me really open my eyes and put it all together with Impressionism. Tracing the steps of the Impressionist forerunners like Boudin to Monet to Hambourg made it so much clearer.
Cheri: I loved learning about Millie’s life with her late husband Bob. I loved how hard they worked together at Left Bank Art Gallery and how much they complimented each other in life and love. It is exciting to think of them traveling all over France to find artists to bring back to the coast of Georgia. After personally experiencing the detective work and all it entails, I am even more in awe. (from the left bank of France to the left bank of the United States- WOW!) I loved meeting Madame Yolande Ardissone (pictured) and her assistant Laure Helene Renaud.
Favorite aspect of Ferme Saint Simeon:
Millie: My room #21 because of the sunrise in the morning with the tint and hint of pink and yellow coming together with the sky meeting the water looking over the estuary that Monet looked over as well in the room next door #22.
Cheri: I loved how understated it was from the guest to the environment. I love the original art everywhere. I love its history of so many impressionists staying there. I love we stayed in the same building as Monet, Corot and Sissily did in the 1800s. I love the wonderful tour we took with the concierge, Xavier Parent.
Favorite food experience on the trip:
Millie: Eating in the main diningroom at Ferme Saint Simeon starting with a glass of wine by the fire place and then into the dininroom all the while looking upon paintings by Herbot and Boussou that I had met in the past. I had a crush on Bourssou. The langoustines and gambas with mayonnaise were divine.
Cheri: It is a tie between the nostalgic joy on Millie’s face when she returned to one of her favorite restaurants, Chez Andre in Paris, after many years and the fromage cart with all of the Normandy cheeses at our dinner at Ferme Saint Simeon.
Best advice to a traveler to in Paris and Honfleur:
Millie: Research…Research…Research. Study before you go. Read up on the history and art so you can really absorb it all while there. If you like Impressionism then Honfleur (pictured) is the place to go.
Cheri: As an American, do not think you can hail a cab like in New York from anywhere in Paris. They have taxi signs and you get in line. One driver told me that they have 20,000 drivers in Paris and a study showed they need 30,000. I believe it.
Favorite museum and why:
Millie: Musee de l’Orangerie in Paris because it has Monet’s water lilies surrounding you.
Cheri: Museum Boudin as I loved his work and the collection in the museum in Honfleur. I love knowing he was a strong influence on his friend Monet. I have become a fan of the work of Hambourg on this trip. I saw many in the museum as well as an exhibit at a gallery.
Hambourg, Andre (1909-1999) La plage, Trouville