This is the first time for La Grande Vigne, which has hosted visual artists until now. “Writing has its place here and Christilla’s project was obvious to the jury,” explains Joëlle Le Guiffant, Dinan’s cultural assistant. After climbing the tall steps that separate Vignette from Grande Vigne, the writer, a former France Inter columnist, answered our questions.
Le Télégramme: In what spirit did you arrive here?
Christilla Pellé-Douël: “I was very surprised to be selected, it’s a great joy. Having two months to devote yourself completely to writing, being in a bubble and in a magnificent environment is wonderful”.
Will the book you are working on, “Spirit of Houses”, talk about artists’ houses?
“Not only that, I want to evoke all the houses, not necessarily the beautiful or famous ones. I’m talking about cottages as well as “Affolantes”, those houses around Barbizon, where I live (a village in Seine-et-Marne known for its connections with pre-impressionist painters, eg the editor). I don’t want to write a decorating book with soulless houses, and beautiful houses don’t necessarily make artists. Gardens are also inspiring places, like the Rosa Bonheur Park, near my home, or the Yvonne Jean-Haffen Park, in Dinan, which I am happy to discover”.
How are your days here?
“In the morning I walk with my dog, I go swimming in the pool of Léhona, this beautiful village where I would like to live. I have to say that since I’ve been walking with Dinan, I want to visit all the houses! And in the afternoon I’m in front of the computer and I work”.
Will there be meetings with the public?
“Yes, I will conduct two writing workshops on the topic ‘What do you think is an artist’s house?’ », at the Jean-Haffen museum, Saturday September 17 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; and Saturday October 8 at the library from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (reservations on tel. 02 96 87 35 41). I will end my stay with a public reading in the bookstore Le Grenier on October 28. I will also be back to present my book next year, when it is published”.