Entrance to Les Douches, la Galerie
As a student in France in the 1980s, I was always fascinated, and a bit perplexed, by the many municipal bath and shower facilities I saw -- especially in Paris.
For some reason or another, I even ended up using one once -- I think a youth hostel I was staying in only had toilets, not showers, and we were guided to the city showers.
I thought they were a thing of the past, but before writing this post, I learned that there are still 17 operating municipal shower facilities in Paris. There is even an official video about them on Daily Motion (all in French.) And according to the newspaper Libération, their popularity is on the upswing, as users include people trying to save money any way they can, including on hot water.
Be that as it may....
...I didn't start my Easter weekend in Paris off with a public shower. My husband had scoped out a photo exhibit of shots of New York, so we headed off to Les Douches, La Galerie.
It was an interesting show, albeit just enough to whet one's appetite for photos of New York City. I was especially interested to see some photos by the mysterious Vivian Maier, and hadn't realized that this gallery had housed her Paris exhibition in 2013.
No doubt here as to what this place used to be
It was fascinating to see how this gallery has kept its "public shower" atmosphere.
The New York photo show is open until May 22nd, and entrance is free -- but showers are not included.