David Hockney's Normandy landscapes, celebrating Chinese New Year & vaccinations in France

·6-min read

This week began with the launch of the unprecedented second impeachment trial of former US president Donald Trump while Myanmar marked its annual Union Day with hundreds of thousands taking to the street to demand the liberation of Aung San Suu Kyi. With Paris museums closed, many are now looking at churches for their cultural offerings and world famous British painter David Hockney has been prolific during his Normandy lockdown.


What to know about Trump’s second impeachment trial

The US Senate began debate this week on the unprecedented second impeachment of former US president Donald Trump as lawmakers decide whether he is guilty of inciting the deadly January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol.

Myanmar marks Union Day with the multi-ethnic national dream slipping further away

Union Day in Myanmar commemorates the February 12, 1947, signing of a historic agreement and the birth of a unified republic. But 74 years later, with the military seizing power in yet another coup, Myanmar’s ethnic minority groups have little patience for an idealised past.

With museums shuttered, Paris churches are 'well worth a mass'

With the city’s cherished museums, theatres, cinemas and concert halls all shuttered and a 6pm curfew still in place, it is currently all work and no play for most Parisians. Mercifully, the capital’s nearly 200 churches and chapels are still open, giving city dwellers starved of culture a good reason to discover some of their hidden treasures.

France wades into the South China Sea with a nuclear attack submarine

The French nuclear attack submarine SNA Emeraude recently conducted a patrol in the South China Sea, Defence Minister Florence Parly announced this week, sparking questions over the timing and tensions in Asia’s hotly contested waters.

Covid-19: Everything you need to know about getting vaccinated in France

What's the difference between the various Covid-19 vaccines available in France? How will getting inoculated work? And what happens after? France's vaccination campaign has raised a wealth of questions. FRANCE 24 answers 20 of them here.

Swan song nears for 'unacceptable' Paris bird market

The chirp-chirping of budgies on Sundays under the glassy ironwork canopies of Paris's Île de la Cité will soon be no more. The city decided last week to shut down the iconic weekly bird market, a stone's throw from Notre-Dame Cathedral in the heart of the French capital, citing animal rights' concerns and chronic irregularities.


Lanterns, lion dances and Covid 19: Lunar New Year celebrations around the world

Dozens of countries rang in the Lunar New Year on February 12, and although this year's festivities have been curtailed by the Covid-19 pandemic, people across the globe have been finding ways to celebrate the start of the Year of the Ox, from underwater lion dances to fantastical lantern displays.

Germany's beer industry fizzles as Covid-19 limits consumption to home

In Germany, ongoing Covid-19 restrictions are having a big impact on its world-famous beer industry. Bars and restaurants are still closed and football stadiums are empty, all of which spells crisis for the quintessential German brew.



Afghanistan's Vice President Saleh: Taliban 'have not honoured' deal with US

In an interview with FRANCE 24, Amrullah Saleh, the first vice president of Afghanistan, said that the Taliban had breached their commitments under the landmark deal agreed with the US last year. He also welcomed the decision of the Biden administration to review US policy on Afghanistan with "wide eyes and open ears".

Haiti foreign minister: 'The president is not a dictator'

Haitian Minister of Foreign Affairs Claude Joseph spoke to FRANCE 24 about concerns the United States and the international community have regarding the recent political turmoil in his country over presidential term limits.

Top Iranian diplomat says US 'should take first step' by returning to nuclear deal

In an interview with FRANCE 24, Iran's ambassador to the UN discussed the possibility of a US return to the 2015 nuclear deal under the Biden administration.


David Hockney brings Normandy landscapes inside

British artist David Hockney has drawn inspiration from his new home in northern France for a series of drawings and paintings that are currently on show at the Lelong gallery in Paris. While public galleries and museums remain closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, commercial art spaces are still open and have become a haven for art fans, including the crowds who've flocked to see Hockney's new work.

France's César awards announce nominations as Covid-19 cloud hangs over ceremony

Encore looks at the front-runners for this year's César awards in France, despite the fact that many of them got very little screen time in cinemas due to the pandemic. Emmanuel Mouret's "Love Affair(s)" leads the nominations, with Albert Dupontel's "Bye Bye Morons" close behind. François Ozon's teen romance "Summer of '85" and Caroline Vignal's "My Lover, My Donkey and I" also received accolades.


From dream to reality: owning a French castle

France has more than 2,000 castles of all kinds across the country, and enthusiasts are willing to make huge sacrifices to become owners. However, they are then faced with the same reality: These monuments are generally a huge financial burden. The smallest renovation work usually costs millions of euros. As a result, today's owners are seeking innovative solutions – such as crowdfunding – to make their castles last.


Julien Boudet, a rising star of fashion photography

Fashion, at its heart, is about creating images: images that inspire, question and excite. Today, millions of them are shared on social media every single day. But to become truly iconic, you need something more. FRANCE 24 meets rising star Julien Boudet, a highly in-demand street-style photographer who's also making waves on the international art scene.


Migrant families brave perilous mountain crossing at France-Italy border

More and more migrants are crossing treacherously high Alpine passes at night, scaling the peaks between Italy and France. Ill-equipped for the dark, snowy conditions and sometimes with young children, they trek on amid fear of being stopped by the police. One family from Afghanistan let a group of reporters walk with them.

Covid-19 vaccines: Is French medical research failing?

In the race to create a Covid-19 vaccine, two French hopefuls have slipped from front-runners to laggards. The Pasteur Institute's decision to stop developing its most promising vaccine came on the heels of Sanofi's announcement that its vaccine would be delayed. The two research giants' inability to succeed in the vaccine race has raised questions about the state of medical research in France. Is this failure a sign of bigger problems?


Forgotten treasures: uncovering the works of women Renaissance artists

Alongside great Renaissance artists such as Michelangelo or Leonardo da Vinci, women were painting at that time too. FRANCE 24 speaks to Linda Falcone whose Florence-based organisation, Advancing Women Artists, restores the works of female painters who were forgotten for centuries because of their gender.

How to further equality: Meeting the French minister responsible for women's rights

FRANCE 24 talks to French Minister for Gender Equality Elisabeth Moreno about the dire need during a pandemic to draft government policy that enshrines women's rights. And as the country is facing a reckoning over the taboo of incest, and with France having no age of consent, the minister also speaks of the need to change the law to protect the country's youth.


Afghanistan-Pakistan: Hazara Shiites, prime targets of Sunni extremists

On both sides of the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, members of the Hazara minority, who practice Shia Islam, have become prime targets for violent Sunni movements such as the Taliban and Islamic State group. In southwestern Pakistan, the Hazaras live in ethnic ghettos. Oon the Afghan side, Hazaras are targeted by jihadist groups. Those who can afford it now ensure their own security. Our reporters went to meet them.


The show must go on: French animation industry thrives despite Covid-19

While Hollywood rules supreme in the world of moviemaking, it is France that has become the global benchmark for animated films. That's perhaps not surprising, given that its origins here date back to the late 19th century. And while the pandemic may sadly have shut down movie theatres, French animation continues to find its audience online, both domestically and abroad. We tell you how they have managed to stay in the frame.