Connecting the dots through photos… Authored by Michael Surtees

Rue Crémieux

Where to start - maybe with the obvious. There’s 35 identical houses on a quiet street that is closed off from cars. To break the monotony colour is used brightly to show off the difference of each. Perhaps another reason back when the paint started going on was to help each owner identify their own. Either way, the combination of color on a quiet Paris street was quite memorable. I’m surprised the more streets whether in Paris or elsewhere haven’t considered the same the idea.

Earlier in the day, Nina I started underground walking the tunnels of the Catacombs. Following our intro to the orderly placement of bones we decided to walk from there all the way to Cimetière du Père-Lachaise. At that point the theme of the day was about death. First to see the unnamed people’s bones up close followed by seeing Chopin, Jim Morisson & Oscar Wilde among others last resting place. While I really enjoyed the experience based on historical perspective, we needed to do something to brighten the mood a bit. Rue Crémieux had been on my list and wasn’t that far away so it was the perfect time to visit. So we walked 30 minutes from the Cimetière to the colourful street.

Its quite hard comparing the sound of Paris to New York. New York is so loud with construction, taxis and sirens. While there are a lot of sirens and rumblings of motorcycles its not obnoxiously loud. Still walking down Rue Crémieux introduced another level of quietness. The only sounds were comping from murmurs of art direction of others excited to be photographing the same street with friends. 

While looking at all the houses that I thought were different, one of the first things I noticed was the texture of the street. The bricked line street is one of many subtle elements of the area that gives its character. The small differences in monotone colour really pop against the bright colours of the walls.

While each house has the same elements, the colours are used to their fullest to give distinct personality. Naturally the each individual color side by side with each other amplifies the distinctions. Slowly walking, taking photos from every conceivable angle made the one block seem a lot longer than it was. While I only walked through once, the feelings of all that brightness still brings back warm memories with Nina.