"I've often envied those who photograph life. 
I avoid it. I start from nothing. 
I make up a story, which I leave untold. 
I imagine  a situation, which doesn't exist. 
I wipe out the space to invent another. 
I shift the light. I rend everything unreal. 
And then I try. 
I watch out for what I didn't expect. 
I wait to see what I can't remember. 
I undo what I put together. 
I hope for hazard. 
But more than anything, 
I long to be struck as I shoot."

"Then, all of a sudden, but not always, 
something changes. 
I can’t say why. 
Maybe I’m just in the right place, 
at the right time. 
Or maybe I believe in it. 
However, for a split second, 
I see a sparkle of beauty passing by, 
or is it simply the difference, or the surprise. 
However, everything goes so quickly now 
within that stillness, 
and I’m carried away. 
And at last I like what I see. 
And I can’t stop finding it, 
then losing it. 
And all day long I'll keep on, 
because it once existed.”

"I only travel in Paris. 
Hotel rooms, deserted cafés, 
broken trains, rented cars, 
abandoned stations and private gardens 
are my landscape. 
By choice maybe, 
but mainly for convenience. 
After all, there's no need for wide open spaces 
or exotic countries,  
as you'd have to crop it anyway, 
it's not the subject."

"The story is not to disturb, 
not to be disturbed, 
keep options open, 
make winter in summer, sun in December, 
and night at noon.
It's all about looks and charm and futility.
It doesn't mix with everything,
we're not there for reality.
It's all made up,
pure fiction,
sweet reverie eventually."

"On my contact sheets, 
I recognise, second by second, 
the fear, the burden, the labour, the absurdity. 
But sometimes a photograph is what they call 
an added value, 
a photo for me, a real photo, 
that instant of grace 
that I  nearly missed, 
and that might never happen again."

All photographs via Gallois Montbrun & Fabiani