Rue de L'Echaudé, Paris, 2017
Catherine Michele Adams
Aluminum Print, 20" x 30";  $1250
Exhibited at Village West in Ancien Régime: the pre-revolutionary world Fall 2018

"Paris is ever a myth of pleasure and refinement. No matter the reality of living there, the narrow streets like those of Saint-Germain charm the world with their precious shops and nostalgia-inducing details.

This street man, day in and day out, reveals the underbelly that still exists in the tony lanes. I see him wandering the neighborhood on each of my visits to Paris, the clothes barely changing if at all, him often grumbling if awake.

These are the moments in which Paris - that eminently social and historical product, as Walter Benjamin called her - reveals her genius loci.

To hold onto their fleeting presence, my camera seeks out these intersections of enduring Parisian tropes and whatever can disquiet them. In this way, I follow the example of the Surrealist flâneur and poet Aragon, who sought out the 'sacral places' of that beautiful city, where her mythic face would be bathed in what he called the 'glaucous gleam.'

That gleam, that light, was ambiguous, something akin to 'the special quality of pale brilliance of a leg suddenly revealed under a lifted skirt.'

Aragon's glaucous eroticism remains present in the tension between the romantic clichés offered by Paris and the realities that set them on edge - like this man passed out in front of a curiosities shop."

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