The young Franco-German photographers Lucie and Simon were awarded the HSBC Prix pour la Photographie in 2010, and the winning work is still delightful years later.

In their series, Scenes of Life, Lucie and Simon present moments we’re all familiar with: a breakfast, a nap on the sofa, a swim in a pool. All of the mundane clutter of everyday life is there in abundant and clear detail. What gives the viewer a real jolt of delight, however, is that all of this is seen from directly overhead, looking straight down — a seemingly impossible perspective, especially for the photographs made inside the rooms of their home.

The peaceful, hovering point-of-view is reminiscent of scenes from Wim Wenders’ Wings of Desire, where we share the delight of seeing things through an angel’s eyes from on high. Or perhaps it’s the feeling one would have in a pleasant out-of-body experience, looking down on oneself, disembodied, floating, detached, removed, above all the hubbub.

We’re simultaneously given a voyeuristic look inside a private moment — and challenged to unravel the technical feats necessary to pull off a series of work like this.

These photos make you smile, and also make you appreciate the creative vision of artists who are able to show us the joys of everyday life, with a twist.

— Jim Casper

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