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Visiting Rue Foyatier and Place Suzanne-Valadon, Paris, France: Verticality and Artistic Memories

Updated on May 27, 2019
Flag of France
Flag of France | Source
Rue Foyatier, Paris.
Rue Foyatier, Paris. | Source
Paris Funicular Railroad at Montmartre. Photo taken by Yan Terrien's grandfather Maurice Terrien 1914-18
Paris Funicular Railroad at Montmartre. Photo taken by Yan Terrien's grandfather Maurice Terrien 1914-18 | Source

Up and back in time and to other dimensions

Rue Foyatier in Paris recalls French neo-classical sculptor Denis Foyatier (1793-1863)(see photo, below)(1).

The street was created in 1867 and named for sculptor Foyatier in 1875.

The lower part of Rue Foyatier was named Place Suzanne-Valadon in 1961, for Post-Impressionist and Symbolist artist Suzanne Valadon (1865-1938)(2).

An interesting feature of Rue Foyatier is that it is not open to road traffic; not because it necessarily constitutes a modern concept of a pedestrian zone but because of its sheer verticality: 100 metres in length, it also rises 35 metres, in a series of sections of steps.

While, despite its lack of vehicle access, Rue Foyatier has become a rather sought after address, not least because of the proximity of Sacré-Cœur Basilica and for its fine views of Paris seen from Montmartre Hill (French: La Butte de Montmartre), an interesting historical association of Rue Foyatier is found at No. 11, where from 1929 a studio named Atelier Lacourière was based (Atelier Lacourière-Frélaut) since 1957). The establishment was founded by French publisher, printer and engraver Roger Lacourière (1892-1966), who was associated with the publishing of works by not a few famous artists, including Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Georges Braque (1882-1963), Marc Chagall (1887-1985) Joan Miró (1893-1983), John Buckland Wright (1897-1954) and many others.

Adjacent to Rue Foyatier and Place Suzanne-Valadon is a funicular railway, now more than a century old, but modernized (see photo, above).

Friendly note: Visitors to Paris with heart ailments are strongly advised not to try to mount this street without stopping!

May 28, 2019


(1) Works of sculptor Foyatier include various statues in the Louvre Museum, Paris, among which are 'Spartacus', 'Cincinnatus' in the Tuileries, Paris, and the Joan of Arc Monument at Orléans, France. A local primary school is also named for sculptor Foyatier.

(2) Works by artist Valadon include Self-Portrait / Autoportrait (1893; see photo, below), and Bouquet de fleurs (1928); Suzanne Valadon also features in paintings of various famous artists, including Pierre-Auguste Renoir's Umbrellas / Parapluies (1883; see photo, below). From 1894, Suzanne Valadon was a member of La Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts.
Biographical note: The Post-Impressionist artist Maurice Utrillo (1883-1955) was Suzanne Valadon's son.

Montmartre Staircase: Rue Foyatier, Paris
Montmartre Staircase: Rue Foyatier, Paris | Source
Portrait of Denis Foyatier by Dupré L.
Portrait of Denis Foyatier by Dupré L. | Source
Suzanne Valadon, Self-Portrait, 1893
Suzanne Valadon, Self-Portrait, 1893 | Source
Renoir's The Umbrellas, c. 1881-86. (NB: figure depicted at left is Suzanne Valadon)
Renoir's The Umbrellas, c. 1881-86. (NB: figure depicted at left is Suzanne Valadon) | Source

Also worth seeing

The huge and absorbing variety of visitor attractions in Paris are impossible to summarize with adequacy. But the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame Cathedral, the Bourbon Palace, and the Paris Opera would be included in any list of the most popular sights.

Reims (distance: 145 kilometres); its Cathedral was where many of the kings of France were crowned.


How to get there: United Airlines flies from New York Newark to Paris (Aéroport Paris-Charles de Gaulle ), from where car rental is available; but visitors to Paris may prefer to explore the city via its public transport system, which is excellent. The Métro stations Abbesses and Anvers are convenient for the Sacré-Cœur vicinity. Some facilities may be withdrawn without notice. For up to date information, please check with the airline or your travel agent.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

Map location of Paris, France
Map location of Paris, France | Source


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    • MJFenn profile imageAUTHOR


      21 months ago

      Liz Westwood: It is indeed a memorable locality. Thank-you for your comment.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      21 months ago from UK

      This is a lovely area of Paris. It has the feel of an artists' village within the city.


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