Pont des Arts / The first metal bridge in Paris, 1802 | Photos by Andre Kertesz / Brassai / Claude Renaud / Robert Doisneau / Willy Ronis / Dominique Berretty / Edouard Boubat / Marc Riboud, 1927-1964

Henri Cartier-Bresson, The Pont des Arts,Paris, 1953
Willy Ronis, La passerelle du pont des Arts, Paris, 1964
Brassai, Le Pont des Arts, 1933-34                                       André Kertész, Pont des Arts, Paris, 1963

The Pont des Arts or Passerelle des Arts is a pedestrian bridge in Paris which crosses the River Seine.
Between 1802 and 1804, under the reign of Napoleon I, a nine-arch metallic bridge for pedestrians was constructed 
at the location of the present day Pont des Arts: this was the first metal bridge in Paris.

Edith Gérin, Le Passant du Pont des Arts, 1949
Claude Renaud, Pont des Arts, Paris 1963

"But now she would not be on the bridge. The thin glow of her face was probably peeking 
into the old doorways in the Marais ghetto, or maybe she was talking to a woman who sells 
fried potatoes, or she might be eating a hot sausage on the Boulevard de Sebastopol. In any
 case, I went out onto the bridge and there was no Maga. I did not run into her along the way 
either. We each knew where the other lived, every cranny we holed up in in our pseudo-student
 existence in Paris, every window by Braque, Ghirlandaio, or Max Ernst set into cheap postcard 
frames and ringed with gaudy posters, but we never looked each other up at home. We preferred
 meeting on the bridge, at a sidewalk cafe, at an art movie, or crouched over a cat in some Latin 
Quarter courtyard. We did not go around looking for each other, but we knew that we would 
meet just the same. Oh, Maga, whenever I saw a woman who looked like you a clear, sharp 
pause would close in like a deafening silence, collapsing like a wet umbrella being closed. 
An umbrella, precisely. Maybe you remember, Maga, that old umbrella we sacrificed in
 a gully in Montsouris Park one sunset on a cold March day." 

Julio Cortázar, Hopscotch, 1963

                Willy Ronis, Le musicien du Pont des Arts, 1957

"Why was I coming to the Pont des Arts? It seems to me that on that December Thursday 
I had intended crossing over to the Right Bank to have some wine in the little café on 
the Rue des Lombards where Madame Léonie reads my palm and tells me of trips and 
surprises. I never took you to have Madame Léonie read your palm, probably because I 
was afraid that she would read some truth about me in your hand, because you have always
 been a frightful mirror, a monstrous instrument of repetitions, and what we had called 
loving was perhaps my standing in front of you holding a yellow flower while you held 
two green candles and a slow rain of renunciations and farewells and Métro tickets blew 
into our faces. So I never took you to Madame Léonie’s, Maga."  

Julio Cortázar, Hopscotch, 1963

Robert Doisneau,  Le Peintre Du Pont Des Arts, 1953
Robert Doisneau,  Le Peintre Du Pont Des Arts, 1953
Willy Ronis, Pont des Arts, 1959                                                Dominique Berretty, Pont des Arts, 1950
Marc Riboud, Lovers of the Pont Des Arts, 1953
Edouard Boubat, Les Pont des Arts, Paris, 1956
Andre Kertesz, M.Seuphor sur le pont des Arts, 1927


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