The calades of PORT GRIMAUD :

barre Port Grimaud

       On the ground floor of the building, on the left as you enter the Market Square, there is a covered passage with asymmetrical arches bordered by sturdy buttresses, which serves to protect walkers from the burning rays of the sun or the raindrops of a sudden shower.

       Typically Provençal, identical ones can be found in most villages around the Mediterranean. In Port Grimaud, such passages exist in rue des 2 Ports, place des 6 Canons or in the Grand'Rue.

       But it is the only passageway with a very pretty mosaic floor, similar to those found on some Lisbon pavements. These mosaics are called "Calades".

barre Port Grimaud

The calades of Lisbonne :

calades de Lisbonne

       In Lisbon, this tradition dates back to the 16th century and reached its peak in the 19th century. Nowadays, many contemporary artists continue the tradition and decorate pavements, metro corridors and park alleys with their calades...

       were made in 2 months. They are composed of some 200,000 black and white pebbles made of basalt and limestone, forming various motifs related to the speciality of each business: a purse represents the bank, a spray bottle the perfumery, a loaf of bread the bakery...

       Unfortunately, the shops have changed their destination and the calades suffer from ageing and a crucial lack of maintenance. Many pebbles have disappeared...

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Scandalous :

calade recouverte

The calades covered... But for how long?

Recently, part of these calades has been covered with a black carpet.
It's a bit like putting a coat on the back of the Venus de Milo.

We must encourage the PG1 Administration
to ensure that this work of art is respected:
- by removing this disastrous carpet
- by restoring this work of art.               

These calades are one of the essential elements that give our lakeside town its beauty...

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The calades of PORT GRIMAUD :

       Overviews :

Calades dePort Grimaud Caldes de Port Grimaud

les calades de Port Grimaud
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Dans le détail :

       Detailed views: each calade represented the business in front of which it was located...

boucherie Parfumerie

Une brasserie Un photographe

Un glacier Une banque

Une librairie Une boulangerie

Une confiserie Une confiserie

Décorations :

       Other calades do not represent shops. They are located in front of building entrances...
Une fleur Une fleur

Une figure
barre Port Grimaud

Les calades de PORT GRIMAUD

       In Provence, une calade, a caladée, encaladée or calade street, refers to a sloping street paved with pebbles often from the Rhone, the Durance or the coast. It also refers to a street stoned with limestone often from quarry waste, building site rubble, demolition material, local stones or also from the Monts du Vaucluse. The stones are laid vertically, on edge.

       The verb 'calader' means 'to pave', 'to stone'. This work was done by the 'caladier' or 'caladaire' in Occitan. Nowadays we speak of a 'caladeur'.

       Calades were also used to designate round or square stoned threshing floors, the floors of house yards or stables.

       Calades can be found in Languedoc (Gard, Hérault, Aude), Aveyron, Alpes-Maritimes and Corsica.

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New mosaics :

calade port grimaud

       Can we speak of calades for these very colourful mosaics placed by owners in front of their houses ?

       No, of course not, because they did not use pebbles or stones, but small pieces of earthenware of various colours. The result is just as successful and convincing...

       They can be admired on the Quai des Fossés, at the entrance to the lakeside town.

calade port grimaud calade port grimaud
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  the work of François SPOERRY...

© Yves Lhermitte 2022   Reproduction interdite sans autorisation...