When French native photographer Zacharie Gaudrillot-Roy took a stroll through Montreal, what he noticed were the facades. Montreal is a distinctive and pretty city: the old townhouses built from the tan rock of a nearby quarry, the spindly wrought-iron staircases that through a quirk of governance ended up on the outside of most of the apartment buildings, the crumbling streets that break, every year, thanks to the city’s brutal winters. But that’s all he could see. What if that was all anyone could see? That’s the subject of Gaudrillot-Roy’s photography series, entitled “Facades.”
The facades of buildings, said Gaudrillot-Roy in an email (warning: non-perfect English), are more than just the front. “Just like during a wandering through a foreign city, I walk through the streets with these questions: what will happen if we stick to that first vision? If the daily life of ‘The Other’ was only a scenery?” What he means is, the facades come to represent our own separation from really knowing a new place. They are the walls that keep us outside, looking in–tourists, basically.
Gaudrillot-Roy created this “Facades” series, in which he digitally erases all but the facade of a typical building, to examine that idea. He writes:
For the construction of these photos, I make shots of urban buildings or others (it can be in the countryside sometimes, Montreal most of the time because I liked all those brick walls!), then I wanted to show only that first view of the city, the façades… so I erased the rest of the constructions, and replaced it by an other background.
You can see more of Gaudrillot-Roy’s work on his site.