A large print from Bertrand Stofleth’s Rhodanie hung in the apartment. I woke up with it every morning before opening this window onto the courtyard. Every piece of the city is framed by some other piece. I tried to frame my experience of Lyon in these fenêtres lyonnaises.
I see people strike up particular relationships with the walls and windows of this place. That they are paid no mind makes them seem all the more human.
Each time you look up it is brutal sky in stoic frame.
Adjacent to the Hôtel de Ville there is the Fontaine Bartholdi. Marianne driving a chariot pulled by four wild horses represents France and her four major rivers.
Saturday mornings can look like this if you walk several blocks beyond the market squares, which seem endless and inviting but I am never hungry in that way for those things.
Students of music theory share a common compulsion to impose on any given note some elaborate harmonic purpose, even in our most transient encounters with them. This may also be the reason I develop emotional attachments to people so quickly, which is perhaps unhealthy.
I can sometimes hear them talk or practice violin, and each morning there is new laundry on the line even though I never see anyone in the courtyard to hang or collect it. After a time, I begin to simply greet the broad face of each wall as my neighbor and this becomes a pleasant acquaintanceship.
Each day is, on its own, a difficulty. Language sometimes preserves such invisible truths threaded through words like seul, soleil, désolé.
Henri Cartier-Bresson described photography as the instant recognition of a moment’s meaning and proper form. Asked then how one encounters such moments, he gestured as though to imply he might sniff them out like a neighbor’s stew.
Sometimes the sun is in your eyes, or you have a pain in your ankle, but here is this monument— site of Gallic councils and Christian torture— and it must be considered.
We can’t see the harm that’s been done, but stand in slivers of light learning how to make a lesson out of cruelty.
If you take some time to observe light—how it warms your face and makes you squint or just how it glances the lip of each stair step at the end of a dim apartment corridor— you will then notice how artificial, how staged, the light seems to be in your dreams. Then the entire history of cinema will become clearer and more significant.