12 Jun DAVID
Bookcase and studio – The space is not big but it is full of promise. David welcomes us into a room that has multiple functions: it’s a living room, library and sewing studio. For David, in his free time, reads as much as he sews. His studio is no bigger than a little desk, which is well ordered, where we can imagine the shadow of our host, bending forward over his notebooks. In them he draws the patterns for blankets and pillows, inspired by the Art Deco style. Dozens of notebooks contain samples and prototypes of patchworks and patterns. We could spend hours browsing, but this is not why we are here. A few meters away, we notice a low bookcase with illustrated and art books. “For inspiration”, says David. On another wall, from floor to ceiling, literature, theatre, essays about fashion, philosophy and history live together. The wooden bookcase is David’s handiwork. He knows its dimensions by heart: 17 cm deep, 23,5 high. 17 cm is not much, right? “I wanted only one layer of books”, he explains. In front of the bookcase, there is a small sofa that David covered in blue velvet. This provides the invitation to read…
Readings – We turn back to the art books, his sources of inspiration. Thanks to them, David has worked on his ideas from Viennese Art to Art Nouveau and Art Deco. As for the novels: “In French literature I have very classic taste: Albert Camus, Marcel Proust, Albert Cohen, Christian Oster, Jean Echenoz.” In foreign literature, he has affection for the young generation of American authors. “Although I have been talking about them as young authors for years, so I guess they are not that young anymore”, he says laughing. Amongst them: Jonathan Tropper, Jonathan Franzen, Jonathan Safran Foer, Marisha Pressl, Nicole Kraus. We also discover numerous books about the Second World War and the Holocaust. “I am fascinated by this topic”, confesses David who just finished reading the three volumes of The Destruction of European Jews by Raul Hilberg. He reviews his bookcase as if he hasn’t looked at it for a while and grabs a few books: Alone in Berlin by Hans Fellada, Death and the Penguin by Andrei Kourkov, The Gulag Archipelago by Alexandre Soljenitsyme. It is vey clear that David is a great reader. And he knows just as much about literature as he does about sewing.
Cosiness – What can be the link between these two activities? “Reading and sewing invite you to withdraw into yourself and create the idea of feeling cosy at home.” You need quietness to read, as well as a relaxing place. Sewing contributes to the creation of this environment. And also there are the objects: a blanket, a pillow, a book. We touch them, we handle them. There is something sensorial, physical.
A FEW BOOKS TO BORROW FROM DAVID:
The Human Stain by Philip Roth, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2000: “Philip Roth never disappoints me”.
Belle du Seigneur by Albert Cohen, Penguin, 1998: a masterpiece of 20th century French romantic literature.
The Book of Joe by Jonathan Tropper, Delta, 2005
Special Topic in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pressl, Penguin, 2006: a murder mystery narrated by a teenager enamored of her own precocity but also in thrall to her father, an enigmatic itinerant professor, and to the charismatic female teacher whose death is announced on the first page.