What's on in November
Our pick of where to go and what to see this month
Artetango, Albi, until November 4
The sleepy, red-brick Tarn town of Albi comes alive with sultry Argentinian passion and dance moves for the 10th edition of the Artetango festival. With shows and concerts, it provides a showcase for musicians and dancers, and gives the public the opportunity to immerse themselves in Argentinian culture (and to learn how to tango or play music!). There is also a public ball, art exhibitions and film showings.
Bay of Mont Saint-Michel exhibition, Vains, Normandy, until November 5
For centuries, man has mapped the Bay of Mont Saint-Michel in order to meet various military, maritime, administrative, tourist or scientific objectives. From richly colored Middle Ages illustrations to 3D representations, this exhibition reveals the evolution of both cartographic techniques, as well as the coastline itself.
fotofever paris 2017, Carrousel du Louvre, November 10–12
Art collection is no longer simply the domain of the wealthy, and photography is among the most accessible of contemporary art forms for amateur collectors.
Now in its 6th year, Carrousel du Louvre is the location for 80 French galleries, as well as ones from countries such as Australia, Turkey and Slovenia, plus 150 emerging artists, to showcase their photography prints for sale.
France v New Zealand rugby, Paris, November 11
Which French équipe will ‘turn up’ for the latest visit of the world’s best rugby team? In the 2015 World Cup, Les Bleus got hammered by them 62-13, but a year later they narrowly missed out on victory by five points. Stade de France is the location for the biggest match for the French players before the Six Nations starts.
Cider festival, Le Sap, Orne, November 11-12
An hour south of Ouistreham, the village of Le Sap’s annual cider festival celebrates the ancient art of cider making and the traditional practice of using a working horse to power the apple press, demonstrations of which take place at regular times over the two days. There’s a great atmosphere, with music, dancing, pony rides for children, and market stalls selling local products. In addition to your freshly pressed cider, you can also enjoy a baguette with your favourite Normandy cheese or an apple tart.
Scallop festival, Le Bessin, Calvados November 11-12
The start of the scallop season is marked in style at the coquille festival Le Goût du Large in Port-en-Bessin-Huppain, north of Bayeux in Normandy.
Launched in 2004, today more than 50,000 seafood lovers head to the port village to enjoy cookery demonstrations, recipe tastings and maritime parties
that include bands and sea shanties.
Celtomania, Loire-Atlantique, until November 12
16 communes in the Loire-Atlantique department join forces to lay on events celebrating the region’s Celtic and Breton heritage, with music (from traditional to rock), dance (an Irish dance troupe will perform this year), and an intriguing sounding interactive installation entitled ‘What’s beneath the kilt?’, which organisers claim is not in the least bit vulgar!
Salon du Palais Gourmand, Cagnes-sur-Mer, November 9-13
Gourmets living on the Riviera can indulge themselves with produce tastings from all over France at the annual gathering of producers at the Cagnes-sur-Mer Hippodrome (race track). From Pays Basque ham makers to Provence vignerons, from cheesemakers of Normandy to Loire Valley chocolatiers, there is something for everyone to taste. There are also international producers present, from Greece, Italy and Spain.
Napoleon: Images of the Legend, Arras, until November 18 2017
From implementing a civil code to conquering much of the European continent, Napoleon’s achivements are wide-reaching – and are about to be brought into sharp focus at a major new exhibtion at the Arras Museum of Fine Arts. Among items lent by the Château de Versailles are over 100 works of art (most commissioned by the leader) which commemorate historic episodes in his life.
Fish festival, Lachaussée, Meuse, until November 19
In a tradition dating back some 800 years, every day the giant pond at Lachaussée is dragged for fishy inhabitants (pike, carp, perch) in a spectacular, ballet-like exhibition of net skills by local fisherman. After the spectacle comes the sorting and weighing of the fish so that they can be sold or cooked for the huge communal feast. Meanwhile all the local auberges lay on special menus using regional produce (some are not fish based!).
Christmas market, Colmar, November 24–December 30
Many French towns and cities embrace the start of the ever-earlier festive season with their own version of a Marché de Noël. However, nowhere does markets quite like Alsace which, with its timber houses and quaint squares, looks picture perfect when all dressed up for Christmas.
Among the prettiest and most authentic places is Colmar, with its monuments, churches and museums providing a backdrop to street stalls, fairy light and magical yuletime feel – and no fewer than five markets.
Salon du Cheval, Paris, November 25–December 3
Saddle up and head for the French capital, where the country’s biggest horse show returns to Paris-Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre.
For nine days, equine enthusiasts can explore all things horsey via four themes: sports and competition; shows and entertainment; breeding and sales; and animal well-being and health. Last year’s event welcomed 140,000 visitors.
Among the highlights is the opening parade of horse-drawn carriages through the streets of Paris, taking in historic monuments and its the most beautiful avenues, on a 20km loop.
Also unmissable: La Nuit du Cheval, a horse-based spectacular featuring Lorenzo, who stands barechested atop whole teams of bareback horses, and the Longines Masters of Paris, a prestige international show jumping competition.
The art of prehistoric hunters, Amou, Landes, until November 26
The name of this new exhibition at La Maison de la Dame is a little misleading – it is not the art of hunting in focus, but rather the art of sculpture that our ancestors employed to create their weapons: Matthieu Lacoste has recreated ornate, life sized atlatls – tools used to gain extra spear-throwing leverage.
Also on display are rare flint, bone and even mammoth ivory spear points found in excavations at nearby Brassempouy.
Christian Dior: Couturier du rêve, Paris, until January 7 2018
The Musée des Art Décoratifs is celebrating the 70th anniversary of the creation of the House of Dior with an exhibition of more than 300 haute couture dresses, accessories and objects. It traces the history of 20th century fashion through a grandiose chronological and thematic presentation of Dior’s expertise and inspiration.
Montmartre, A Film Set, Paris,
until January 14 2018
Taking three themes — Montmartre and its icons, Pleasure and Crime, and where dream and reality collide in Montmartre, this exhibition at the Musée de Montmartre looks at the important role played by the area in film history. Visitors are guided via video installations, vintage film posters and scripts, while Amélie fans get their own section – complete with cast photos and props from the popular Audrey Tautou film.
American collections – until January or March Paris galleries have collaborated with two US museums to provide an arts feast in Paris this autumn and winter, with classic Irving Penn photographs plus works such as Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans.
This is Irving Penn’s centenary and the Grand Palais, with The Irving Penn Foundation and Metropolitan Museum of Art, hosts the first major retrospective of his work in France since he died in 2009. It includes hundreds of prints, drawings and paintings of Picasso, Audrey Hepburn and, Mary Jane Russell (pictured)... until January 29.
New York’s Museum of Modern Art is undergoing expansion and renovation so it has joined with the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris for Being Modern: MoMA in Paris to show modern art through American abstraction, Pop art and Minimalism to contemporary works. In addition to Warhol, there is René Magritte, Roy Lichtenstein plus Disney’s first film, Steamboat Willie... until March 5, 2018.