This impressionistic memorial to Parisian chanteuse Edith Piaf is easy to miss: it's located on the Square Edith Piaf in a remote corner of northeast Paris, just outside the Porte de Bagnolet Metro station. The bronze statue was commissioned to Lisbeth Delisle by Paris City Hall in 2003 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of "the little sparrow's" death. It also happens to be in close reach of the Tenon Hospital, where Piaf was either born or given emergency care after coming into the world under a lamp on a street in nearby Belleville, according to contradictory accounts, in 1915.
So far reception hasn't been all that warm: critics complain that the statue is lumpy and graceless and doesn't do justice in rendering Piaf, despite attempting to capture her impassioned performance style. What do you think of it? Please leave your comments below.
Related Articles and Resources:
- Guide to the 20th Arrondissement (Edith Piaf's birthplace and site of the memorial)
- Pere Lachaise Cemetery (site of Piaf's grave)
- La Java Nightclub (Piaf gave some early performances here)
- Edith Piaf Museum
- Edith Piaf Profile (at About.com World Music)
- Review of Piaf biopic La Vie en Rose (at About.com World/Independent Film)
Image: ©2010 Courtney Traub.