Living the Bohemian Student Dream in 1960s Paris

studentsinparis

I love to find a good Paris photo story that I haven’t seen before, and this one that I found buried in the LIFE archives is a quite the treat. Veteran photographer for the magazine Loomis Dean followed a group of young students in 1961, getting an intimate peek into their lives as they pursued the bohemian dream in mid-century Paris.

And you know what? It doesn’t seem like much has changed. Clicking through, I noticed the routines didn’t seem so different from the Paris I’ve come to know today. Whether you start out in a tiny attic room or student dorms, throw yourself into the café culture or lose yourself in art museums, Paris is more recogniseable than ever in this photo story from decades past…

Monday nights at the local…

parisbar

parisbar4

parisbar3

 

The mid-week hangovers…

hangover

Actual photo caption: “Student with a hangover”.

hangover1

 

To the Café! (and make it a double)…

pariscafe1

paricafe

 

Close living quarters (the dorm room years)…

dorms5

A college dormitory at number 57 Rue Lacépède in the 5th arrondissement (Latin Quarter). 

dorms4

There is still a café under this building called La Contrescarpe (see it here on Google earth).

dormroom

records

A student looking through his music.

dorm2

parisdorm

 

 A Classroom in Paris

studentspark

Students studying in a park.

artstudents

Art students visiting a gallery.

artstudents2

 

Every hour is Apéro Hour!

parisbar2

 

Getting to know the locals…

parisbar5

(over Pastis-fuelled philosophical debates)

parisbar6

 

Beatnik shindigs in old wine cellars…

cellarparty

cellar1

 

Ending up at a house parties, having no idea who the apartment belongs to.

parisparty

 

Saturday nights in.

parisdinner

parisdinner3

parisdinner2

 

Inspiration-searching Sundays…

parisstreet

seinemusician

Strolling down the Seine…

parisstreet1

parisman

parisartist

Art students “picnicking” with their models…

nudes

 

Not forgetting Springtime loves…

parisinspiration

fallinginlove

fallinginlove1

 

And of course, too many damn cigarettes.

smokingcigarettes

cellarparty1

pariscafe2

 

All photos (c) LIFE

Heaven and Hell Coffee Lounge in Soho, W1 |Eric Lindsay

This is a brilliant blog post about the Heaven and Hell Coffee Bar in Soho. Sadly not with us anymore. Check it out!!

Ray Jackson and I opened Heaven and Hell in late 1955. I had the idea from when I had been working in Paris, where there was a type of cheap cabaret called  “Ciel at l’Enfer” “Heaven and Hell” in Pigalle. The name and the place intrigued me, so later when I was in Paris again with Ray, I took him along to see the place and he also thought it was tacky but great.

Source: Heaven and Hell Coffee Lounge in Soho, W.I. | ericlindsay 

Be Here Now – Ram Dass (1971)

1960s: Days of Rage


“I watched the movie many, many times, but when it came to reading Be Here Now, it was so over my head. I loved the artistic presentation and illustrations, but every time I tried to read it, I had no idea what it was talking about. So it sat on a shelf alongside all my other books, and every once in a while I’d catch the title out of the corner of my eye and feel guilty for never reading it. In case you haven’t read it, Be Here Now is a pretty ‘far out’ book. Written in the early 70’s, it begins with some background about Dass himself: how he was a professor at Harvard, and his work at the forefront of the 60’s LSD research and experimentation movement. Dass says things that might alienate or scare off a person who didn’t live through the Sixties, or who…

View original post 286 more words

Coney Island of the Mind – Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1958)

1960s: Days of Rage


“This year marks the 50th anniversary of the publication of Coney Island of the Mind, Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s landmark second volume of poetry. In commemoration, New Directions has recently released a new hardback edition of the book, complete with a CD of the author reading the bulk of its poems, as well as selections from Pictures of the Gone World, his first collection of verse. Such an elaborate republication is highly appropriate–for time has revealed Coney Island of the Mind to be not only a book of great cultural importance, but also a major classic of modern poetry. As a social phenomenon Coney Island of the Mind is truly remarkable. With roughly a million copies in print, few poetry collections come anywhere close to matching its readership. Raw sales, though, only tell part of the story. Along with Jack Kerouac’s On the Road and Allen Ginsberg’s Howl

View original post 150 more words