Le Pont de Grenelle
I find it very easy to get lost in this city and today I found myself not actually lost but not particularly close to where I wanted to be. Just as I was lamenting leaving my apartment, I realized that I was less than a block from Mlle Liberty*. I’d seen her a few times from the bus but never up close so I headed over to Pont de Grenelle for a better look. The sight of Lady Liberty’s sandal clad heel immediately swept away my crankiness. Unfortunately, she did nothing for my chilled bones so I didn’t stay long. Heading for shelter, I noticed a lovely ramp (on the opposite side of the street from Lady Liberty) leading down to the Île aux Cygnes where Miss Liberty** stands. If spring ever arrives I plan to return for a picnic.
*This particular version is 11.50 meters high and was a gift from the American Community to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the French Revolution.
**Turns out there are two other Statues of Liberty in Paris (and a replica of her flame as well***). There’s one (the second by my reckoning) in the Jardin du Luxembourg, donated by the artist himself, and a third in (or possibly in front of) the Musée des Arts et Métiers. The museum holds the original plaster cast made by the artist, Auguste Bartholdi, as well as a bronze made from this cast.
There are also hundreds of other versions of Lady Liberty in every corner of the known world, which you can read about here.
***Curiously the International Herald Tribune gave the city a full-size replica of the New York Miss Liberty’s flame to mark 100 years of Publishing in Paris. The flame is located on the north side of the Pont de l’Alma.
The plaque reads: A l’occasion de l’exposition universelle de 1900, le sculpteur Auguste Bartholdi a offert au musée du Luxembourg le modèle en bronze qui lui servit à réaliser la statue de la Liberte de New York. Cette statue a été placé en 1906 dans le jardin du Luxembourg.