Burgundians of the Heart (Les Bourguignons de Coeur)

Special people and their love affairs with Burgundy


Burgundy has had an indelible impact on both the life and the painting of local artist Michel Pernès. Born in Burgundy in 1943, he went to art school in Chalon-sur-Saône, and today Burgundy inspires his evocative and light-filled paintings.

When you are in Beaune, don't forget to make a trip to his gallery and admire his latest creations.

Gallerie Michel PERNÈS 19 Rue Monge Place de la Halle 21200 Beaune
Tel: 03 80 24 92 67 Fax: 03 80 21 84 25
  • 1. What was your first contact with Burgundy and why do you love living here?
  • Michel: My first contact with Burgundy was on the 18th of December, 1943, the day of my birth in the department of the Nièvre in Burgundy. After a vagabond childhood with time spent in Narcy, Compiègne, Saint-Cloud, St. Germain-en-Laye, La Garenne Colombe, when I was 14 years old Burgundy welcomed me back with a move to Chalon-sur-Saône.
  • 2. How does Burgundy inspire your painting?
  • Michel: Very quickly I had the desire to discover the region where I was born. With this aim, I traipsed around Le Morvan, La Bresse, the wine coast…With my sketchpad in hand I drew and painted these landscapes with a myriad of faces. En somme, le voyage à portée de jambes.
  • I think that rather than saying I live in Burgundy, it is in fact more accurate to say that Burgundy lives in me. Burgundy isn’t a static region, but a panaché of diverse regions. It gives me colours, movement, architecture, and joie de vivre.
  • 3. What is your favourite village or town? Why?
  • Michel: It is very difficult to pick a favorite village; it is precisely its diversity which gives Burgundy its special ability to be a place where we lose ourselves in order to find ourselves again.
  • 4. What is your favourite Burgundian dish?
  • Michel: As far as culinary things go, les oeufs en meurette (eggs in red wine sauce) is one of the traditional dishes that I keenly appreciate, and that also goes for the multitude of other dishes and sauces made from local wines.
  • 5. What is your favourite Burgundian wine?
  • Michel: To accompany all of this wonderful food, each wine has its place: Côte de Nuits, Côte de Beaune, Chablis, Mercurey, Cléssé, etc…a wonderful time spent at the table systematically has a way of opening up my imagination and giving me the irresistible desire to explore the unknown pathways of Burgundy - my home.
  • 6. What is your favorite activity in Burgundy?
  • Michel: If I could only recommend one activity to the visitors, it would be walking through Burgundy’s wonderful countryside and enjoying its abundant nature.
  • 7. What is your best memory of Burgundy?
  • Michel: The best memories I have of Burgundy are when I lose myself in a local village, sketchpad or easel in hand.
  • 8. How would you describe the Burgundian “caractère”?
  • Michel: Burgundy is like a woman who never reveals all her facets at the same time, and a Bourguignon will know how to give you the best of himself by winning your trust – he is a colourful and convivial character.
  • 9. What is it that you treasure most about daily life in Burgundy, and where is your favourite place to watch the sun set over Burgundy?
  • Michel: A path which smells of earth, woods that smell of moss, a creek that bubbles before our eyes, a countryside like the one in Bresse that gives you exceptional sunsets, that is the lung which allows me to breathe.