Dorothy’s Gallery is not Parisian, not in the traditional and strictest sense of the term. It is a slice of America that has been transported and given an undeniably Parisian flavor.

Located at the heart of the Bastille neighborhood it is an unconventional hybrid art venue. Its 130m² host various rotating art exhibitions as well as providing a forum for cultural and political exchanges. Despite France’s often voiced hostility towards American cultural, these have undeniably leaned upon and infused one another, to such an extent that it is surprising that so few places exists which recognize and celebrate this cultural entanglement. Dorothy’s Gallery brings together emerging artists of contemporary art – writers, painters, sculptures, photographers, and many others – who are interested in this ‘French American hybridity’.

The gallery’s young staff are always welcoming, and offer a fresh perspective and example of the philosophy of hybridity that they gallery exudes. Meanwhile Dorothy herself is never far away, her voice and influence felt throughout the place. And it is perhaps her words that really encapsulate the essence of the place:

“I want a gallery with a strong personality, informal, friendly, democratic. Art should be accessible to all with appropriate cultural mediation”. Dorothy Polley

Naniso Tswai
I have travelled afar and aplenty but never before have I met a city such as Paris. In fact, “that Paris exists and anyone could choose to live anywhere else in the world will always be a mystery to me” (Woody Allen: Midnight in Paris). This powerful quote both explains and encapsulates my relationship with Paris. Young, energetic and full of life, almost instantly her cuteness consumes you, coursing through your veins until all you desire is to never leave her embrace. But it is not all catwalk perfections, as despite her elegant demeanour, living here is an altogether different and gritty affair. For the tourist Paris dons her most beautiful frock and flirts an irresistible charm, but were you intent on becoming a permanent fixture, prepare yourself for her invariably coarse moods. She is obstinately and often infuriatingly French. She wears her French mantra, indeed breaths it as if though to do anything else would be an affront to her flag. Even when I ventured into her sprawling contours expecting her personality to become diluted, however I was both relieved and perplexed by the resoluteness of character. She is France at its most unyielding, arrogant and concentrated self, but damn, do I love to love her. I invite you to follow my own discoveries of Paris’s hidden corners and whispered beauties.

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