Contemporary French culture
Dance to French house music!
Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel, Gabriel Fauré and Olivier Messiaen are no longer the only musicians to bring the spotlight on France. Since the 1980s, French house music, or “French touch,” has been making a name for itself on the world electronic music scene. Did you know that artists like Air, Daft Punk, Justice, Martin Solveig, David Guetta or Bob Sinclar, whose success keeps growing, are French?
Choose your festival!
Every year, numerous festivals that suit all tastes are organized in many places in France. If you are a big fan of contemporary music you will certainly go to the festival Rock en Seine in Paris, to the Vieilles Charrues in Bretagne, to the Francofolies in La Rochelle, to the Jazz in Marciac in the Gers or to the Eurockéennes in Belfort. If you prefer classical music, you will surely not be disappointed with the Aix en Provence International Lyrics Arts Festival or the La Roque d’Anthéron International Piano Festival. For those of you who are big theatre buffs, the Avignon Festival is a must-see event! If you are a fan of comics, the Angoulême Festival is sure to deliver, and if you are an amateur photographer, the Meetings of Arles is the place to be. Last but not least, whatever your cinematic tastes are, you must go to the Cannes Festival, an annual star-studded event on the French Riviera where you can see many celebrities go up the famed red-carpeted stairs.
Cinema and photography: are there any takers?
Since cinema was created by the Lumière brothers in1895 in Paris, French directors, scriptwriters and actors have been cultivating this particular link that unites them to the 7th art. France is the 3rd most important filmmaking country in the world and has succeeded in promoting the cultural exception in the creation of films, from the “Avant Garde” to the “Nouvelle Vague”, from Fernandel to Marion Cotillard. So, this is your chance to go discover for the first time, or see once again, the wonderful films of Godard, Truffaud, Jeunet and Luc Besson, world famous directors, or the numerous other classic movies which made French cinema so famous.
If you know Robert Doisneau and his beautiful photographs, you will certainly enjoy those of Raymond Depardon, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Bettina Rheims or Yann Arthus-Bertand, photographers who made a name for themselves in the 20th and the 21st century.
Discover the wonders of French architecture and design!
You can’t visit France without being impressed by the beauty of French architecture and eclecticism. From Gustave Eiffel, who built the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty, to Jean Nouvel, architect of the Louvre in Abu Dhabi and of the “Quai Branly” Museum in Paris, and then to Le Corbusier, who created the Radiant City in Marseille, the contemporary period was marked by dynamic construction activities, each one being more original and more successfully completed than the others. Paris and the “Ile de France” in particular will dazzle you not only with their historical monuments but also with the recent additions that are the Montparnasse Tower, the Business district of La Défense and the Stade of France.
Immerse in contemporary French art!
This is your chance to see the masterpieces of Duchamp, Soulages Klein or Dubuffet, some of the most famous contemporary artists. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Centre Pompidou in Paris and in Metz and the National Modern Art Gallery, which are the true temples of contemporary and modern art.
Now, you know that you will learn not only in the university but also in every place you will explore in France.