December 14, 2014 - January 18, 2015
There were 10 consecutive days in Paris during a semester abroad where I made a picnic lunch and ate it in the plaza of The Centre Pompidou: a baguette, a chunk of cheese, a tomato, and a carton of blood-orange juice. Each day I watched a man assemble and play a drum kit in the plaza. In place of the cymbal he had strung up a sock filled with sand. Every time the song called for him to play the cymbal, he hit the sock with his drumstick and it swung back and forth until it slowed to a stop, or the song required that he hit it again. He also had a large mobile phone. It was broken, but while he played, he would yell “Je t’aime. Je t’aime.” over and over into it as loud as he could. There is something about how the swinging sock stands in for the sound of the cymbal. Despite the actual silence of the thing, we all heard it anyway; a visual thing repeatedly working to absolve an obvious void.