The phrase, "Lost in the crowd", never seems more real to me than when I view the work of French photographer Edouard Mortec. His series Foules seeks to capture the fervid activity of the Parisian streets while ensuring that not a single person is espoused in any way. Those faces that do make it through are layered on top of each other, blurring the unique definition that sets them apart. The city almost seems too vibrant, as the sensory limits of what the viewer can take in at once are tested and pushed. Despite this, I clearly see the hustle and bustle of a busy city and the stresses of everyday life. But I also see the loneliness one feels sometimes while walking among a crowd.
It is the ultimate expression of irony, that you can be in a group of hundreds yet feel alone. You stand on a subway and look at the fellow riders around you and not one person is glancing back. It's almost as if we are subconsciously trained to hold ourselves in, contain our feelings inside, and seal any holes that might let them out. It's a defense mechanism and our way of protecting what we hold dear. When someone breaks that mold, we think they are strange.
We need each other, we just don't know how to show it. So we tredge along as these photographs show, oblivious to the rest of the world. So it goes.