During the spring of 2022, I spent a couple of weeks in Grez-sur-Loing. It was at the end of the pandemic and the journey from Sweden to France was by train through countries that all had their own restrictions and solutions – for how to use the mask, what distance you should keep to other people and how you should behave in public transport. The attention was drawn to the invisible border between us. I have never been so aware of how my own body felt and its existence in relation to the public space.
Once I arrived in Grez-sur-Loing, there was something about the small houses that I found intriguing. At first I couldn't understand what it was, but I soon realized that the short side of the buildings had no windows. The houses were surrounded by neat little gardens with a beautiful wall or hedge which were neatly kept, but whose main purpose seemed to be to mark a boundary, not to be aesthetically pleasing. It made the houses look more like small forts than houses for someone to live in. At the same time this put focus on a rather obvious contradiction – the lack of windows provides protection from the outside but it also makes it difficult to see out. In some way, the body of the house became a reflection of my own body, in this unfamiliar place during this strange time.