The book of photographs À Paris, which was released in France last year, is now available in the United States under the title In Paris: 20 Women of Life in the City of Lights.
According to French fashion designer and model Jeanne Damas, it is impossible to define what the archetype of la Parisienne really means: there are as many Parisian women as there are women in Paris. To prove her point, “the coolest, most beautiful French girl,” according to the magazine GQ, took her camera to the streets and shot 20 portraits.
The resulting work is a far cry from Caroline de Maigret’s How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are (2014) and Inès de la Fressange’s What Should I Wear Today? (2016). Damas’ collection of analog photographs acts as an homage to the French capital city in the aftermath of the November 2016 attacks rather than just a style guide. Each image is augmented by a text by Lauren Bastide, the former editor in chief of the weekly women’s magazine Elle and the founder of the feminist podcast La Poudre.
“You are parisienne when you live in Paris, when you love your city and you want to stay there,” said Demas, an Instagram celebrity who happily shares her favorite Parisian addresses. “You don’t need to have been born there!”
Jeanne Damas and Lauren Bastide, In Paris: 20 Women of Life in the City of Lights, Penguin Books (2018)