Our Blogger: Stefano
The bouquinistes are the sellers of second-hand books in Paris who have installed their wooden stands along the Seine. For decades, they have been offering the best of arts, litterature and entertainment at an affordable price in the largest “open air library” in the world. Today they are considered “heritage of humanity".
The bouquinistes are a part of the history of Paris. The same term, "Bouquin" in argot is an old book.
We can find in Rome a similar tradition, a sort of book trade, sometimes wandering the city, not formalized, but with a long tradition. Indeed we can find markets, book stalls and kiosks set up in many parts of Rome: Campo de ‘Fiori, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Piazza Pasquino, and the Fontanella Borghese. This is the place to sell books, not to be confused with other stands dotted around the city that have nothing to do with the tradition of which we speak.
Today their business is gradually changing in line with market needs and demands of tourists. And so, instead of old books and prints of works of art, on the kiosks appear now posters of famous actors or, in Paris, small plastic Eiffel Towers.
For this reason it was decided to revisit the streets of Paris by an exhibition dedicated to bouquinistes.
The exhibition will be inaugurated during the eleventh week of culture. It proposes materials coming primarily from the collection of the National Library Ceccarius and that of the Parisian museum in Rome.
The exhibition will display images and documents from the XIX and XX centuries. We’ll find many books, newspapers, posters and postcards that tell the story of this ancient tradition.
An unusual exhibition that will bind two great capitals that have always been culturally close. The photographs will be on display on the National Library on Viale Castro Pretorio 105, only a couple of steps away from Hotel Des Artistes!
In fact, Des Artistes and Yes Hotel are two wonderful accomodation structures in Rome. Their location and comfort standards are great, and will offer you everything you need to have a fantastic time in the Eternal City.
|Bouquinistes: street book-sellers between Paris and Rome
Monday – Friday 10.00 – 18.00 Saturday 10.00 – 13.00 (may vary, always check by phone)
National Library, Viale Castro Pretorio 105, Rome