City of Lights No More at La Défense

There are many sculptures in La Défense, even one by Catalan painter Joan Miro. I have yet to find out who made this particular sculpture, but it makes for a great self-portrait, also reflecting the district's skyscrapers.

Paris didn’t live up to its name as City of Lights tonight, well, at least not in La Defense. I expected more from this city as far as illumination and was very disappointed that it did not deliver as far as this part of town. For the most part, it was nice to be away from the hustle and bustle of the main attractions and not having to deal with the scores of tourists who would fight with you for the best vantage spot in Trocadero, or even the “suicide”shot of the Arc in the middle of traffic in Champs Elysees.

In La Defense, I spent a lot of time on the bench facing the pool that looked towards Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel tower. I had enough time to survey the area before the golden light, and decided to start with the spiral sculptures on the pool facing both famous landmarks. It was a bit of a walk to La Defense’s famous Grand Arche on the other side of the promenade, and my route for the night depended on the direction of the light. Whenever possible, I usually start my twilight shots facing the east and end in the west where the light would linger the longest.

Unfortunately, I had to find out later on, that neither the pool sculptures nor the Grand Arche was lit up for the night, so everything changed in the spur of the moment. Luckily for me though, the landmarks that I had purposely avoided tonight — the Eiffel tower and the Arc de Triomphe — would be my coup de grace, giving me that much needed glow for my twilight shots.

Cheminée d'aération, a sculpture and ventilation shaft, was built in 1990 and is nearly 30-meters high. It is composed of concrete and fiberglass and created by Raymond Moretti

The unmistakeable glow of La Tour Eiffel, as seen from La Défense. This is the City of Lights that I know.


2 responses

  1. Your photo above of the fruit sculpture is amazing. Love the details. So have you played around with your 14mm lens?

  2. Hi, Rex! I used my 24-70 on that photo, but I did consider using the 14mm for a little bit. The problem was, the light was fading fast and I had to run to the other side for other shots, and did not want to waste any more time changing lenses. I guess the 14mm would have been perfect here, wouldn’t it?

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