Help me find exact location of André Kertész's 'Stairs Of Montmartre'
February 26, 2014 12:54 AM   Subscribe

We are visiting Paris in the summer and I hoping to visit to exact location of André Kertész's photo, 'Stairs Of Montmartre'. From what I can tell looking at Street View on Google Maps and exploring Flickr, there are many steps in Montmartre and I am hoping I don't need to climb all of them looking for the location of this iconic photo. Can someone give me the location who has been there?
posted by vac2003 to Society & Culture (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
There are indeed lots of steps.

I think they're the ones below the Panoramique du Funiculaire (streetview here), at the junction of Rue Chappe and André Barsacq.

But having said that, the area is full of similar-looking stairs.
posted by pipeski at 1:33 AM on February 26

Montmartre is not an area I hang around at a lot, so I cannot suggest the specific location. BUT if you need someone to pass by and check out some of the suggestions here, you can get in touch with me via (M)email. Have metro pass, and book, will travel.
posted by whatzit at 4:45 AM on February 26 [3 favorites]

No idea, sorry. But I would note that:

- one cannot see a lamppost in front of the central railing, unlike many staircases
- there are two lampposts at the bottom of the stairs on either side
- there is a set of stairs coming off the main stairs, to the right as we look at it
- they are quite wide stairs, and therefore not the common or garden ones between roads
- the railings on each side are directly next to the stairs

In addition, it looks like there square at the bottom of the stairs, and a right hand curve in the road. One cannot tell if the square at the bottom actually is flat, but it looks flattish.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:51 AM on February 26

This description mentions annotations, though I can't make them match any present day address:
"annotated ‘André Kertész/ 5 rue de Vanves/ Paris 14e’"
posted by katemonster at 6:07 AM on February 26

Montmartre is in the 18e Arrondissement. Rue de Vanves is present day Rue Raymond-Losserand in the 14e.
posted by MuffinMan at 6:43 AM on February 26

Either that staircase is not in Montmartre or it has changed significantly since 1927. I could be wrong.

This guy has pages and pages of the stairs of Montmartre, including old postcards and current views. At a quick glance, none of them appear anything like this.
posted by vacapinta at 8:25 AM on February 26 [1 favorite]

I don't think it's montmartre. I've stayed all over the hill and I don't recognise those stairs. The set going off to the right threw me. Looks more like Belleville.
posted by mani at 8:49 AM on February 26

Oddly, here's a photo of the same place but with a wider view.
posted by vacapinta at 9:45 AM on February 26

This looks like the same place too. If you can read that sign...
posted by vacapinta at 9:51 AM on February 26 [1 favorite]

Ok I found it. The bad news is that it was demolished in 1966. Also, it wasn't Montmartre.

The plaque on the street in this photo reads "Quai de la Loire." There is a Quai de la Loire in Paris but its been heavily rebuilt. The stairway in the photos is the Passerelle de la Moselle, a footbridge over the river. You can see that the details line up - the stairs going down, the street lamps etc.
posted by vacapinta at 10:53 AM on February 26 [8 favorites]

Ok I found it. The bad news is that it was demolished in 1966. Also, it wasn't Montmartre.

Thank you for all your help vacapinta. Much appreciated. On the one hand, I am sad that it is gone and I can no longer find the place of one of my alltime favorite photos. But I also glad I don't have to walk all those stairs looking for it!

Thank you also to whatzit for your offer of help. It was very kind of you.
posted by vac2003 at 4:24 PM on February 26

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