Sunday, April 28, 2013


One of the more popular gods among men and Immortals, Dionysus, spread merrymaking and the secrets of wine making far and wide in his mythical travels. Here the Greek god of grape harvests, revelry and theatre, is represented in an Art Nouveau bas relief embedded in the façade of a villa in Versailles' Montreuil neighborhood. The quarter has a treasure trove of glazed stoneware decorative elements, crowning jewels of the bourgeois residential building style created in the early 1900's by the Versailles architect and wealthy entrepreneur, Léon Bachelin. His historic houses, typically constructed in meulière with Art Nouveau ceramic ornaments on their façades, are concentrated in Versailles along the Avenue des Etats-Unis, the Boulevard de la République,  and their adjoining streets.

meulière:  here, a stone used frequently in residential constructions in the Parisian area; characteristic of a regional architectural style when combined with Art Nouveau ceramic pieces
imbriqué:  embedded
un regard vitreux:  a glassy look (e.g., in the eye)

©2013 P.B. Lecron