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Pushpamala N., Paris Autumn

Paris Autumn

Paris Autumn is a work of fiction in the style of a gothic thriller. The idea for the work came to Pushpamala during a recent stay in Paris, where she arrived on a three- month artist residency of the French Embassy in India (SCAC). While she rented a room in one of the oldest streets in the Marais, strange happenings began to occur. It was then she realised she was living in the outhouses of the mansion that had once belonged to Gabrielle d’Estrées, King Henri IV’s favourite, who died, poisoned no doubt, at the age of twenty-six just as she was about to marry the king.

From that moment on, Pushpamala had to find out about this woman who had come to such a tragic end. Pushpamala’s quest began at the Louvre, opposite The Fortune Teller by Caravaggio and continued in the kitsch atmosphere of the Chapelle des Petits-Augustins. The timing occasionally resembles that of the Da Vinci Code, completely out of sync against a background of highly expressionist music. The action takes place at various points throughout Paris that Pushpamala, stroller and detective graced with the gift of ubiquity, assembles into a strange map: with Haussmannian perspectives, the Eiffel Tower and cafés follow images of urban violence. Pushpamala seems to read the world like a "complex and stratified, open and enigmatic"[*] literary work that she makes up as she weaves her way through a mysterious urban territory where, right down to the flow of the images, we find the "halting" nature of the City according to Benjamin, like a succession of paintings put together