December 9, 2022

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Ferdinand Cheval spent 33 years building an extraordinary palace from the cobbles he collected on his daily postal route

Ferdinand Cheval spent 33 years building an extraordinary palace from the cobbles he collected on his daily postal route

Postman Cheval (April 19, 1836 – August 19, 1924) was a French postman who spent 33 years building an extraordinary chateau out of pebbles and boulders he collected during the daily mail route. I find it surprising that he was able to build such a fantastical building simply using the stones he found. Cheval called the structure Le Palais idéal, which means “the perfect palace”. located in HauterivesIt is now a municipality located in the department of Drôme in southeastern France.

Cheval on his palace:

“I was walking so fast when my feet hit something that made me stumble a few meters away, I wanted to know why. In a dream I built a palace, castle or caves, I can’t express it well… I said no one about it for fear of ridicule and I felt ridiculous Then fifteen years later, when I almost forgot my dream, when I hadn’t thought of it at all, my feet reminded me of it. The stone that nearly fell. I wanted to know what it was… It was a stone of such a strange shape that I put it in my pocket to admire it. Easily. The next day, I came back to the same place. I found more stones, even more beautiful. I gathered them together at once and were beaten with pleasure… It is a sandstone formed by water and hardened by the force of time. It becomes as hard as pebbles. It is a very strange statue. …that it is impossible for man to imitate him, he represents any kind of animal, any kind of caricature. I said to myself: Nature is ready to do the sculpture, I will do the building and the architecture.”

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