Only in Paris

Did you see this article? Amazing. Stuff like this only happens in Paris, I swear.

Basically an apartment in Paris was recently discovered that had not been entered or touched since 1940! 1940! No one had set foot in the place in over 70 years.Instead of finding dead plants and dusty furniture, they found a true glimpse into what life was like before WWII. Among the belongings they found a painting by the 19th century Italian artist Giovanni Boldini that was worth over $3 million! Again only in Paris. The woman who owned the apartment had left for the south of France before the WWWII  broke out and never returned. Her granddaughter continued to pay the apartment bills until she herself died in 2010 at the age of 91.

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Although no one had been in the apartment in well over half a century, the furniture and design is from a much earlier time in Paris history – the Belle Epoque – the golden age of Paris.The pictures of the apartment are really fascinating – I love the bohemian and glamorous way the pantings  and furniture are laid out through the apartment. This is the stuff that design dreams are made of.  Plus the stuffed ostrich is wild. If only I had room for a stuffed ostrich in my apartment.

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Paris collage
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And for the true Parisian kicker- the woman in the painting(above) turned out to be the owner of the apartment and Boldini’s former muse, Marthe de Florian- whose granddaughter had been paying the bills on the apartment for all of these years. Only in Paris.

This article got me thinking, if no one entered our apartment for 70 years – what would they find? What would be worth some cash? I am going to have to think long and hard about that one…or maybe I should starting offering my services as a muse to an artist so there can be a $3 million painting just hanging out in my dusty apartment waiting to be discovered.

What about you? What would you want people to find in your apartment in 70 years?


  1. Pam Porvaznik says

    Just a lovely find that takes us right back into a time of exquisite taste and glamor. Interesting mix of furniture–a bow to Russia, Belgium or Switzerland in a few of the Bohemian pieces, yet so very French in the formal chairs and rugs. America and the new age of film was not lost of the Mickey Mouse and Porky Pig characters residing on the floor. And the Boldini portrait! He painted John Singer Sergent somewhere before the turn of the century, and you can see the similarity in their painting styles. What you’ve done here by capturing this time capsule is strike the imagination. I want to wonder through that room and hear all the secrets of the lives that entered, stayed and left.

  2. says

    I had read much about this apartment (we are furniture conservators) but not heard the last about Boldini’s muse. If you are in Salt Lake City go to the museum for the University of Utah and there are some amazing Boldini’s. He completely captivated me and my husband!

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