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Bernard Chevalier


Love totems

Quai du Louvre, in Paris, at the foot of the Pont Neuf, the plane trees which border the Seine are for a few hundred meters all affected by the same love disease: on their parchment bark, generations of lovers from all over the world have engraved their names or their initials around a heart. The growth of the tree, the proliferation of moss and the ravages of time have distorted these signs, which have become for the most part illegible. The scarified trunks have become rolls of ancient grimoires, totems loaded with signs of belonging and recognition specific to the clan of lovers of love. From human to plant, it circulates, it hybridizes as the anthropologist Philippe Descola says, and the trees on the Quai du Louvre loaded with memory will die just like old lovers.

Bernard Chevalier

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