What's in a Name?

Paul Renoir once had it all. But after years of botched business deals, he has virtually nothing left of his inheritance save the one thing he can't lose: His lineage to the famous painter.

In France, Paul is still a celebrity. He's still ushered into museums where lines wrap around the block. It's not easy, Paul says, because everyone expects more from him because he's a Renoir. His friend Terry had made a similar comment over the phone: "How do you ever get away from that? How do you ever get accepted on your own?"

"You can go to any famous family, they all have problems," Marie-Paule says. But, she adds, that doesn't necessarily mean they're unhappy. She motions to Paul. "He's happy. He's a healthy man. There's nothing more he can offer himself or me either, so he's happy with everybody else, and he lives on that cloud. As long as he has his books around him and all that. We don't go dancing. We don't go out and socialize. I don't need it. I don't."

For her own part, she's happy too, but could be better. "We still own a fortune with [Pierre-Auguste's] papers."

Paul Renoir is now affiliated with the Arjang Gallery, whose owner's best-known work is a bust of Ronald Reagan.
Deron Neblett
Paul Renoir is now affiliated with the Arjang Gallery, whose owner's best-known work is a bust of Ronald Reagan.

Related Stories

More About

So does Paul ever yearn to go back to Europe? He shakes his head. He's happy right here. "This is where she is," he says, smiling gleefully as he nudges his wife. It's virtually the only bit of English he's spoken.

When finished, Paul needs some help standing. The wear of age and gravity is evident, but there is still an odd levity to his step, as if the floor were cumulous. This dinner's on the house, yet another benefit of being a Renoir. And there's good news about those archives. They might have found a buyer. If true, then his name will indeed be the only thing of his grandfather's Paul Renoir has left.

« Previous Page
 |
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
All
 
My Voice Nation Help
0 comments
 
Houston Concert Tickets
Loading...