Exploring Paris: doorways, staircases and signage

During my recent trip to Paris I stayed in Le Marais, an historic district of the city that is now full of bohemian and creative shops, studios and galleries. As well as hosting some of the Paris Design Week exhibitions, Le Marais is full of stunning historical architecture and current-day design – a real feast for the eyes!

I could have spent days and days wandering through the old cobbled streets absorbing all the little details that make up the rich and diverse street scene. Unfortunately I only had 48 hours to spend in Paris but here are some of the details that I managed to capture.

I was struck by the contrast between old and new, particularly when it comes to signage. The typography is so different and the older signs are far more permanent. Perhaps that’s because the most permanent signs (e.g. carved into stone) have endured due to the materials they are made from, and in fact the painted, handwritten and printed signs have disintegrated over time to be replaced by newer signs made of similar materials. I wonder which of the signs installed today will last into the next century?

 Admittedly this isn't in Paris, it's on Avenham Street in Preston, but writing about the permanence of signs reminded me of this image. I took it as part of the research for my MA project and thought what a shame it is that the building now stands empty, on the verge of dereliction. Someone must have taken great pride in it a long time ago, to have the company name carved into the brickwork.

Admittedly this isn't in Paris, it's on Avenham Street in Preston, but writing about the permanence of signs reminded me of this image. I took it as part of the research for my MA project and thought what a shame it is that the building now stands empty, on the verge of dereliction. Someone must have taken great pride in it a long time ago, to have the company name carved into the brickwork.