Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Back in an hour

Night time, Place du Palais des Papes
The living statues you often see in touristy places around the world use various techniques. One I saw further down on place de l'Horloge changed positions every time he was given a coin - a great incentive to give! His creative poses delighted the public. This one, also very successful, chose the absolutely no move option. His all-white outfit was a perfect match for the gorgeous background of the Pope's Palace. A note at his feet said he could keep the same pose for up to an hour. Eyes peacefully closed, where does his mind take him for such a long time? Is he accutely aware of the crowds around him, listening to every voice and move, or detached in semi-meditation?
Festival d'Avignon - spectacles de rue
Les hommes-statues qu'on voit souvent dans les lieux touristiques un peu partout dans le monde emploient différentes techniques : un autre, vu un peu plus bas sur la place de l'Horloge, changeait de pose à chaque fois qu'on lui donnait une pièce - un excellent encouragement à donner. Ses poses créatives enchantaient le public. Celui-ci, également très photographié, avait choisi l'immobilité totale. Son costume blanc s'alliait parfaitement avec le décor somptueux du palais des Papes. Une note à ses pieds indiquait qu'il pouvait rester sans bouger pendant une heure. Yeux fermés sans crispation, où son esprit l'emmène-t-il pendant si longtemps ? Est-il intensément perceptif des voix et des mouvements autour de lui ou détaché en semi-méditation ?
Festival d'Avignon, animation de rue

24 comments:

Jérôme said...

Beautiful lighting!

Virginia said...

Nathalie,
As always a great photo from you. I like the smaller one because the yellow bottle is not a distraction from the ethereal portrait. Beautifully composed. Une belle photo. I will try out my French if you will help me when I am incorrect , s'il vous plait. Merci!

d. chedwick said...

I love to see these living statues. great shots!

Strangetastes said...

Full-blown mindfulness meditation would be a great skill for him! By the way, then I saw the thumbnail on the portal, I thought from the dress and posture that it might be my city's patron saint.

Bergson said...

je suis toujours ébloui par leur performances en plus ce personnage à des voiles amples qui ne doivent pas bouger non plus.
Champion !!

Nathalie said...

Virginia of course I will help you with your French if you want! And you're right, I was really annoyed with that yellow bottle and that's exactly why I cropped the second photo.

claude said...

Bouh ! Mais comment fait-il pour rester immobile sans sourciller pendant une heure ? Mon Dieu ! Ce n'est pas un boulot pour moi , moi qui est toujours des fourillements dans les jambes. En plus j'espère qu'il ne faisait pas trop chaud, car habiller de la sorte, moi je suffoque. Chapeau à cet homme statue !

Mary Jo said...

Awesome shot and model :)

Julie said...

But you see, I liked the yellow bottle. What on earth did he have it for? It looks like a fruit juice bottle. It is totally at odds with the Heloise poise that he strikes. I am constantly amazed by people who spend their time being living statues. As you know, Nathalie, we have them here in Sydney in both the Pitt Street Mall and around Circular Quay. Talk about watching paint dry!!

Milbert Benstein said...

Au moins, en le regardant lui, on a le sentiment d'être actif !!!

Nathalie said...

The yellow bottle was full of bubble soap. When he needed a break he blew a few bubbles. It was a nice idea except I really would have liked the bottle to be white also.

La bouteille jaune était remplie de savon à bulles. Quand il avait besoin de bouger un peu il soufflait quelques bulles. Super, sauf que la bouteille aurait dû être blanche aussi. Ce jaune était vraiment vilain.

Bibi said...

Ha, ha! I first was thinking the bottle was soap bubbles, too, and then saw that indeed it was. But when did he blow them?

I enjoy seeing these "statues" in Paris and even here in Belgrade.

Virginia said...

Thanks Nathalie for your comments on my post today. I was able to translate all but one word!
PS Do you suppose a passerby put the yellow bottle in his hand as a joke?

Hilda said...

Wow. I think that he can rival monks at meditation any time. Amazing.

babooshka said...

I loved these when we were in Nice, but this is the first with soap bubbles. Marvellous lighting you have on this image, it's made its such an eerie image.

Tomate Farcie said...

You know that's a good question! I'm hoping these guys meditate or something because it's not easy at all to sit completely still for so long!

(the yellow bottle was the detail that gave it away, otherwise, I would have thought the shot was of a real statue! OK, maybe if you look really carefully ...)

Sally said...

I'm starting to get really annoyed with the proliferation of these "statues"....don;t know why. But the movement thing on a coin is interesting. Many (and the worst case was the recent visit to Barcelona - and in las Ramblas especially, but also Southbank in London), the buskers are sitting around "taking a break", packing up, chatting etc.

Did you feel obliged to pay for the photographs?

Thanks for your comment on Sussex St, 11.30pm . No jetlag effects WHEN I took it- in fact I had been out to a function. I was soooooo tired when I posted it next morning though(yes, jetlag, still - they say it takes about a week to get over it).

It is the end of Sussex St near Cockle Bay, looking from the second storey of a carpark.

ruth said...

This really is rich looking. I like how you posted two photos so we can see that he didn't move.

I would get so itchy from the face paint and hot costume!

MmeBenaut said...

This is definitely an occupation for someone with incredible self-control. If it were me, I'd probably have to scratch my nose or something.
Love the light and shadows and the majesty of the background of course, Nathalie.

Nathalie said...

My apologies to those of you who might be arriving later, I have removed the second photo. As Ruth explained nicely, it was a repeat of the first and served no purpose but to show that the statue didn't move. OK it didn't. Take my word for it.

Nathalie said...

Sally I tend to agree with you, there really are many of these 'statues' around and it spoils the magic a bit.

Chuck Pefley said...

Interesting question ... meditating? listening? I know I wouldn't be able to totally ignore the people passing. I have difficulty closing my eyes for very long on an airplane flight and am quite aware of air movement caused by passing bodies.

OrganicPIX.com said...

Terrific depiction.
But, wow, I would not have the fortitude for this - if my mind wouldn't wonder I would most likely fall asleep and tumble off the perch!

Tippie said...

Jolie photo.

A A'dam aussi, si tu donnes une pièce, "il" change de postion.

(As-tu remarqué que ce sont plus souvent des hommes que des femmes qui font ce 'métier'?!)

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