French theater has a distinguished and glorious history that dates all the way back to the 12th century, during an era when the idea of dramatic performances for entertainment purposes, and not just for religious education, was commencing to surface. While most of the material was written and performed in Latin, it was nonetheless a notable beginning. French theater traces its birth to the Middle Ages; however it really came into its own during the Renaissance and most distinctively under the reign of King Louis XIV.
Today, Paris is recognized throughout Europe and renowned throughout the world as a city famous for its passion for the arts, especially theatre. This fact gives rise to gifted photographer Franck Bohbot’s series, simply called Theaters.
In the collection, Bohbot’s photographs take you on an intimate journey into some of the most regal and ostentatious theater halls in Paris. The beautiful and opulent designs and architecture hearken to the days of incredible theater performances of opera and ballet, of which the French are both world famous. It is a sight very few, if any, get to see in a lifetime, even to this day.
While each theatre would not be complete without the culture hounds and art aficionados, Bohbot’s photos are stark images of the halls, resplendent in their own intrinsic glory. Theaters is distinct in the way it is able to bring an intimacy within the confines of these great performance venues.
It is a rare and private exploration of the very best of Paris culture and it’s infatuation for the arts. The breathtaking visuals of baroque interiors lavishly ornate with crystal chandeliers and red velvet are a step back in time when opulence was the norm. The architecture is just absolutely incredible, and Bohbot’s lenses capture the extravagant nature of each structure from different perspectives.
Bohbot endeavored to portray the cultural life as mirrored in the style and design of the times, and he succeeds quite effectively. The absence of people reveals these bare theater halls, highlighting an even greater sense of grandeur and stateliness.
See the magnificent theaters, in Bohbot’s fitting tribute to them over at his website.