“Near my chestnut tree, I feel at peace”

Of his ” lost corner in the south of France She won’t say anything, nor the location of her favorite tree. However, when Julie-Marie Parmentier speaks, the words flow generously: “I am particularly attached to a chestnut tree by the number of its years and what it causes in me. Huge and impressive, it must be between 500 and 600 years old. When I am with him, I feel at peace, in serenity. This is where I need to be, sitting at his foot or observing him from afar and watching how the seasons affect him. “

For the actress, eating chestnuts prolongs her emotion: “Gathering them and feeding them to me for almost a year creates a strong bond, another way of knowing him. He has certainly made thousands of people taste his fruits before me and I do not know how many will come after me. I find it very pleasant to feel drowned in this multitude. “

It is also in terms with spiritual tones that Julie-Marie Parmentier evokes her chestnut tree: “The tangle of its fallen branches, its shoots and its low branches creates a blur between the dead and the living in a delimitation that is no longer so concrete. “

As a little girl, Julie-Marie Parmentier grew up in the countryside, but without her parents taking her particularly for a walk in the forest, or showing her the plants. However, the link with nature exists which strengthens over time: ” When I came to live in Paris, cut off from nature, I realized that it was essential to me, vital. Now I couldn’t do without the seasons, the presence of insects, the intimate knowledge of certain birds and lizards, and its inherent violence that almost every day leads to being faced with death with the discovery of corpses of animals. ” We will hardly be surprised that Julie-Marie Parmentier gives an important place to nature in her writing of poems and novels that she is putting in shape for a future publication. Like this haiku: “Dandelion so yellow / What a shame / The sun has returned. “

Actress on stage from childhood, Julie-Marie Parmentier began a successful career in television and cinema as a teenager, playing with filmmakers like Noémie Lvovsky (Life doesn’t scare me), Robert Guédiguian (The city is quiet) and Jean-Pierre Denis (Les Injuries assassines). But a few years ago, she distanced herself, declining the proposals for several roles to satisfy her intellectual curiosity and devote herself to writing: “I am passionate about astronomy, botany, ethnography, biomimicry and a whole section of mathematics, she explains. I did not want to hinder these passions. Besides, I want to protect my autistic husband from Asperger’s disease at all costs. What we are experiencing is more precious than a movie or a play. “

Lover of literature, Julie-Marie Parmentier likes to share her discoveries: since October 2020, she has posted on Twitter and on her site short readings of texts from authors as eclectic as Camus, Césaire, Apollinaire, Yeats and Virgile. These videos earned him in return messages from French Internet users, but also Bosnian, Russian or Turkish. She has been shooting them for a few months outdoors. “Since I was 18, I have always imagined myself saying texts in nature, a dream come true. It is a living cathedral where constraints like the beauty of light become forces. ” In this open-air theater, Julie-Marie Parmentier’s chestnut tree necessarily occupies a special place: “He has seen so much and will see so much that saying the words of Molière or Chateaubriand to his feet takes on a tremendous resonance. “


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