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Overview

Secret Gardens of Paris by Alexandra d'Arnoux

Hidden behind the elegant facades and high walls of Paris are its private gardens. Whether grandiose or minuscule, highly manicured or exuberantly untended, these gardens are a secret treasure seldom seen by the visitor to Paris. This book reveals some fifty gardens, all created with passion by their owners, often in collaboration with well-known landscape designers. Each proprietor discusses the conditions in which the garden was created, the constraints and the problems that were encountered, and explains why the final design and plantings were chosen. The traditional French-style gardens, such as those of Hubert de Givenchy or Pierre Berge, are attached to private town houses, and their designs mirror the elegance and restraint of these classic dwellings. Romantic, picturesque potagers or kitchen gardens belonging to Yves Saint Laurent and others reflect their owners' taste for outdoor living. Tropical gardens with giant ferns and rare flowers, admirably tended oriental gardens, a Russian garden surrounding a little wooden hut, a Japanese garden that encourages meditation—these exotic hideaways allow us to discover other cultures. Beautifully photographed and described, this sumptuous volume invites the reader to explore these secluded horticultural gems within the heart of Paris, the most magical of cities. 220 color photographs.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780500283547
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Publication date: 06/01/2002
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 9.00(w) x 11.80(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

The Unknown Paris6
Classical Gardens9
Cool shade and brilliant light by Arabella Lennox-Boyd10
Classical simplicity for Hubert de Givenchy16
An understated complement to a neoclassical mansion23
A theatrical statement by Louis Benech28
Nature harnessed to a purpose in eighteenth-century style33
Where romance is in the air38
The miniature garden of an American in Paris40
Originality and sensuality on the Ile Saint-Louis44
A spirit of adventure expressed by Pierre Berge50
A haven of peace in Saint-Germain-des-Pres57
A legacy of contrasts from the 1940s59
President and Madame Giscard d'Estaing's garden for all seasons62
An artist's small miracle of harmony and balance67
A discerning blend of shrubs and perennials70
Yves Saint Laurent's finely tailored garden75
Symmetry and luxury combined to spectacular effect78
Picturesque Gardens85
Nature and sculpture in a sea of green86
Recapturing the mood of the nineteenth century91
Camille Muller's exercise in restrained luxuriance96
Memories of Brittany on the Montagne Sainte-Genevieve103
An out-of-the-ordinary kitchen garden106
Where Napoleon's favourite actor strolled110
An informal family garden in the Marais114
A feminine ambience inspired by fashion and art118
The romantic indulgence of a master landscape designer122
Hector Guimard's Art Nouveau garden restored to perfection129
A green oasis in a secret setting134
Where the elephant stands guard140
Exotic Gardens145
Baron and Baronne d'Orgeval's taste of rural Russia146
An Italian fantasy in a Parisian courtyard150
Kenzo's Japanese landscape in miniature153
A lush Asian paradise on the Left Bank158
Introducing flavours of Africa and the Orient164
A garden with a spiritual dimension171

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