torstai 13. heinäkuuta 2017

Welcome To Avignon: Arts, Bohemians & Rosé

July is an anticipated and magical month here. Every year for three weeks the city becomes the stage of the famous Festival d'Avignon, The Avignon Festival. The event was founded in 1947 and has since grown to be the world's greatest theatre festival and the oldest extant in France. What makes the event extra special is the transformation of the city. Avignon doesn't just host the event, it transforms into it. Some sites within the city walls become almost unrecognizable by the thousands of theatre posters covering meters of buildings' walls, masses of festival goers and street artists. 

Most see daily from two to three theatre plays, which they choose from the overwhelmingly large selection. The festival's shows are divided into two categories: the "IN" and the "OFF". Everything IN is part of the official selection of the festival, which annually consists of about 60 shows. The majority of the plays, known as the OFF-festival, are presented to the audience by numerous independent groups and theatres. 

For three weeks everything in Avignon revolves around the festival that gives the city its much needed annual economic boost. Hotels are booked full months before and many locals make a nice amount of cash by renting their flats to the festival goers. Art galleries, cafes, restaurants, second hand shops and bars appear like desert flowers after a heavy rain and eventually disappear just as fast as  they bloomed. 

The festival attracts people from all corners of the world, but according to the statistics, especially the cultivated women and men of Paris. The chic parisians bring their sense of style and coolness to the streets of Avignon. Suddenly little flower dresses are in fashion (normally nobody wears a dress in this city) and bras seem to be globally forgotten. The city being day and night full of police officers and theatre goers creates a safe bubble to dress more daringly than would normally be wise in Avignon. 

What I love about the festival is that there is nothing exclusive, posh or pretentious about it. Although a certain aesthetic preference can be observed among the public, the atmosphere is very relaxed and encourages you to come as you are.  The unofficial official drink of the event is rosé that people enjoy everywhere you turn your head to. It's three weeks of enjoying one's creativity and liberty. I imagine the bohemian festival's long summer nights provoke thousands of romances within the medieval city walls. 

I love people watching during the festival. Everybody looks so interesting and original! Such an inspiration also style-wise. I decided to have some fun and put together a collage of the most popular women's festival look: boho dress (sans bra of course), leather bag and sandals paired with minimal amount of make up and natural hair. An important part of the style is that nothing you wear looks brand new. Even better if your clothes are all thrifted.

If you haven't yet visited the Avignon Festival, I recommend to mark it on your list of things to do. The atmosphere of the medieval city during the event is something to experience, whether you are a theatre-enthusiast or not!

4 kommenttia:

  1. Oh, a "safe space" for daring dressing is such a nice thing. Enjoy!

  2. Hi Iza! Oh yes, it's so hot and I'm happy that even for one month I can leave my bra home or have a bit shorter dress :D

  3. Did you see any plays during the festival? It looks like it has a great atmosphere. I enjoy your pictures of the city streets there. It's neat to get a glimpse of everyday life (or festival life) across the world.

    1. Hi Marina! I haven't yet seen any plays during the festival, but we decided to make sure to save a bit of money to see at least a few next year! For most locals actually "going to the festival" means strolling the streets and enjoying the atmosphere and street artists as we are not as wealthy as the parisians :D I'm happy you enjoyed my photos!