May, June and July were busy months meeting, exchanging and photographing residents of the EHPAD le Maillol in Lacrouzette and EHPAD Agir in Castres (2 nursing homes in France). So strange how as a baby one’s world starts off so small, at first, not much exists beyond the breast then the circle gets larger larger – family – the physical environment and as an adult moves out further and further across the planet and beyond. We are, after all connected. Meeting with these elderly people I am struck by how that world shrinks in old age, with a limited physical environment and mental capacities reduced the small things in life take on greater and greater importance. The contact I had with the residents although brief, was valuable for both of us. Seeing how kindness like watering a weary flower, immediately perks up an individual was a powerful lesson.
Now in the second phase of the project, Inside Out, children from the local after school center come to the home, meet the old folks and photograph each other for portraits that will be pasted up in the village. the young ones bring a buzz of energy and chaos to the static quality of the nursing home and brought a smile to the lips of the most recalcitrant of residents . Another photo session coming up next week. What better role can photography have then bringing people together.