“Bastille Day” by Marion Eisenmann
It’s Bastille Day, so I thought I would repost a sketch Marion Eisenmann did a year ago during a gathering in Elysian Park.
July 16, 2010: Marion Eisenmann called Sunday and suggested we visit a Bastille Day celebration in Elysian Park. I practiced my rusty high school French on the way there with Marion quizzing me “How would you say ‘I’m hungry?’ ” (My teacher, Madame Royce, would be so pleased that I remembered).
Instead of Paris’ Champs Elysees, the Los Angeles festival, presented by Passion Productions, was held in Elysian Park, at a quite pleasant, grassy area near Stadium Way and Scott Avenue around the bend from Dodger Stadium.
And yes, speaking of “I’m hungry,” there were pastries and other delicacies at a variety of booths and of course, some folks were watching the World Cup on TV. But most people were listening to the music and sitting at tables or lounging on the grass. And in Los Angeles, a Bastille Day celebration included dancing by the Polynesian dance group Fetia Rangi from Orange County because it’s French Polynesia.
It was a great occasion to be surrounded by a European clique, with food and music from France, a country not far from where I originate. The illustration captures a peaceful and French ambience, of “picnicking” people, combined with a distinct view from Elysian Park overlooking parts of downtown. Very contrary to the busy and crowded celebration along the Champs-Elysees in Paris.
Note: In case you just tuned in, Marion Eisenmann and I are visiting spots around Los Angeles in a modern version of what Joe Seewerker and Charles Owens did in the 1930s with The Times’ Nuestro Pueblo feature.
Anyone who’s interested in Marion’s artwork should contact her directly.