Vol. 2: Jewel Boxes of the Night
The cities of Europe have two faces, that of the day and that of the night. Shops with no signboards and a subdued appearance shut up early in the evening, but as night falls they suddenly change to take on a new, brilliant look. This transformation is effected by the open show windows that spread over the length of the shop, together with the sparkle of the illuminated signs that highlight the show windows. The attractiveness of the clothes and the accessories is enhanced by the stylish displays, while the lighting is used to illuminate the shop right to the back. One is astonished to see how the shops seem so exposed, their interiors protected by no more than a single plate of glass. One of the pleasures of traveling in Europe is to be able to walk at night along streets lined with shops, each arranged like a jewel box. The window gives the impression that the shop as a whole is itself a sign, and the interest shown in how the window actually looks reflects the fact that the proprietor of each shop is aware that the evening provides the best possible time to advertise the items on the premises. But, even more than this, it seems to me that this is a reflection of a spirit of service to people strolling through the streets. One senses here the way in which Europeans look on outdoor urban space as a thoroughfare and place particular importance on the overall unified beauty of the urban environment.

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