Watching History Disappear

1historyOver the last few weeks I have watched history being washed away from the street in which I live. This may seem a strange thing to say when the result is a suberbly renovated ancient building, but the peeling away of layers of grime has also peeled away a layer of time. The walls of this structure are now magnolia white, but two timeworn handpainted advertising panels have disappeared forever.

2historyThe generally accepted term for these traces of promotional history is ghost signs. There are comparatively few around Paris, very largely for the reasons shown here. Enviromental regulations in Paris demand that homeowners sandblast the façades of their buildings on a regular basis (approximately every 20 years), and most painted elements have long since been removed. 3historyParis is very much a stone city too, whereas many examples of surviving ghost signs around the world were painted on brick (indeed, another term for them is brickads). 

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One Response to “Watching History Disappear”

  1. Comment by Sandblasting Film | 03/20/10 at 4:05 am

    It is sad to see so many pieces of history dissapearing. Progress smoetimes does not honor the last like it should.

    Thank you for sharing a little of the history of Paris.

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