What's on in October

Our pick of where to go and what to see this month

British Film Festival, Dinard, until October 1
French actress and director Nicole Garcia heads up the jury for the 28th edition of Brittany’s annual Emerald Coast love-in for British move-making. It brings a variety of dynamic and original British productions for both professionals and cinephiles. Five cinemas will host festival viewers, with ticket sale information online. The tattooed pensioner in the poster hints at a rebellious attitude this year.

Toulouse Les Orgues, Haute-Garonne,October 4–15
This year’s organ festival not only provides an excuse to make a trip to the Pink City but also invites audiences to experience a “soupçon” of musical madness as they attend a wide variety of musical events (40 concerts are programmed) that play on the notion of losing one’s mind for the love of music. ‘Amour fou’ for the organ!

Salon de Loisirs Créatifs, Toulouse, October 5-8
‘Four days to explore a big box of ideas’ is how organisers describe this arts and crafts salon, which kicks off in Toulouse before moving on to La Roche sur Foron, Haute-Savoie (October 12-15) and Bordeaux (October 26-29).

Nuit Blanche, Paris,October 7
The French capital will light up for one Saturday night to remember, with the return of the city’s Nuit Blanche. This year’s event, copied by more than 35 cities around the world since its inauguration in Paris in 2002 has artistic collaboration as its theme. Expect installations around town on a trail, plotted out under the curation of Charlotte Laubard.

La Rochelle jazz festival, until October 7
Subtitled ‘Entre les deux tours’ (Between the two towers) which refers to its tower-flanked portside location, this year’s jazz fest in Charente-Maritime features Lionel Belmondo’s John Coltrane tribute and plenty of free shows.

Musica festival, Strasbourg,until October 7
Since it was founded in 1982, the Musica festival has been showcasing a wide array of classical works, ranging from 20th century masterpieces to contemporary compositions. Variety is key – over 35 years, 800 composers have been represented.

100 jobs as seen by Breton artists, Le Faouët, Morbihan, until October 8
Many trades have inspired the painters and photographers who frequented Brittany in the 19th and 20th centuries. This exhibition retraces this evolution through nearly 150 works and 80 artists who captured snapshots of a bygone era from the land and sea.

Picasso 1932, Musée Pablo Picasso, Paris,from October 10
Is it possible to trace a year of Picasso’s life? This exhibition is hoping so, inviting the visitor to follow, on a daily basis and on a strictly chronological path, the artist’s output during a particularly rich year. It was the year in which he declared “The art we make is a way of holding our newspaper.”

Montmartre vendange, Paris, October 11-15
As reported in July’s Connexion, Paris has a thriving vineyard scene and the annual harvest (vendange) is celebrated in style at the most famous of these among the historic streets of hilltop Montmartre. Expect wine-themed parades and exhibitions as well as concerts and plenty of tasting opportunities. On the Sunday afternoon at 17:00 on Square Louise-Michel there will be a glamorous street disco, called Le Bal Dalida, to mark the 30th anniversary of the death of the celebrated chanteuse.

Gauguin the Alchemist at the Grand Palais, Paris, from October 11 (until January 2018)
19th-century master Gauguin’s capacity to push each of his artistic media – painting, sculpture and decorative arts – to their limits is the theme of this major new retrospective of over 200 works.
The exhibition amid the splendid Beaux-Arts architecture of the Grand Palais on the Champs-Elysée will include 55 paintings. A 90-minute guided tour can be booked on the website.

Salon d’Automne, 2 Pavillons, Paris,from October 12-15
Held since 1903, the 2017 Salon d’Automne at 2 Pavillons on the Champs-Elysées will exhibit around 900 artists, from 45 different countries.
Beyond classification by discipline – Engraving, Sculpture, Drawing, Photography, Digital Art, Video, Architecture, Environmental Art, and Artists’ books – there are several sections within Painting.

Les Journées des Plantes de Chantilly, Oise, October 13-15
Set in the majestic park of Domaine de Chantilly (whose formal gardens, featuring extensive parterres and water features, were laid out principally by André Le Nôtre), this huge plant fair celebrates 30 years in 2017. It transferred here from its original location, Château de Courson, in 2015 and is now a must-see on the horticultural calendar.200 exhibitors will be on duty presenting their wares, all excellent nurserymen and women chosen by the various selection committees, while the International Jury of Merits will present prizes for the most beautiful plants.Nurseries, plant collectors, landscapers, professionals of the plant world and horticultural associations... all of gardening life is here, as well as objects and furniture for the garden, gardening tools, crafts and workshops.

Circa Festival of Modern Circus, Auch, October 20–29
Every year on Toussaint weekend, the Gers town is transformed into a contemporary circus centre. This year, to celebrate the event’s 30th anniversary, around 20 shows will be performed around town over ten days. The event features a wide range of circus troupes from France and abroad.

Jazzèbre Jazz Festival, Perpignan, until October 22
This selection of high quality jazz gatherings – with a heavy focus on contemporary music while not ignoring the standards – is deliberately organised out of peak season. It takes place in Perpignan, Céret and other locations in Pyrénées Orientales. This year there are smatterings of gospel and soul in the mix, too.

David Hockney at Centre Pompidou, Paris, until October 23
The most comprehensive retrospective exhibition – with more than one hundred and sixty paintings, photographs, engravings, video installations, drawings and books – devoted to the work of David Hockney marks the artist’s 80th birthday.

Fête du Piment, Espelette, October 28-29
Locally grown and dried red peppers, which can be seen adorning buildings around the village, are the stars of this annual festival in Pays Basque. Expect tastings, recipe demos, musical events and dancing in honour of the pepper.

Calder at Musée Soulages, Rodez, until October 28-29
In the wonderful museum that has transformed Rodez city centre into a cultural hotspot, this is your last chance to see an exhibition dedicated to one of the 20th century’s major sculptors – and
the originator of the mobile (moving sculpture) – American Alexander Calder.

Salon du Chocolat, Porte de Versailles, Paris, October 28–November 1
THIS is the world’s largest event dedicated to chocolate and cocoa. Master chocolatiers line up alongside pastry makers, confectioners, top chefs and cocoa experts to treat visitors to cookery demos.
The Cacao Show space is where cocoa-producing countries reveal their exotic secrets through dance, songs, music and rituals, and there is even a fashion show featuring chocolate frocks. These stunning couture outfits made and inspired by chocolate will be presented during the Gala Evening (on October 27) and every day at 5:00 from October 28 through to November 1.
Add in a bookstore with author signings, pastry and chocolate workshops in L’Atelier des Sens, a sculpture area with artist Richard Orlinski working with patissier Yann Couvreur, and you have all the ingredients for a chocoholic’s paradise.

Contemporary art biennial, Lyon, until December 31
Every two years, over 500 artists working across all artistic disciplines – painting, sculpture, photo and video – get some much needed exposure to an art-loving publics. This year’s event takes the word ‘modern’ as its inspiration.