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Little Josephine

Memory in Pieces

Illustrated by Raphaël

A first-hand account of the most unlikely friendship between a visiting nurse and her Alzheimer's patient, Josephine.
 

When Valérie first met Josephine, she knew she would be embarking on a unique journey. Though vastly different in age, their connection was instantaneous. Humor quickly became their language, their playground, and despite the debilitating disease that Joséphine faced every single day, they were able to form a beautiful friendship that transcended the reaches of modern medicine.

Valérie Villieu has been a visiting nurse in the Paris region for about twenty years, while at the same time pursuing personal and collective creative projects, mostly pertaining to photographic arts. Little Josephine is one component of a collective work she initiated around the theme of old age entitled Vieux (“Old”) which was exhibited at the City of Sciences and Industry (Cité de la Santé) in Paris.

Raphaël Sarfati is a bookstore keeper in a small village, as well as a comic book illustrator and an occasional vegetarian chef. He regularly collaborates with poetess Beatrice Brérot, searching for their common sequential language, and has been published in Bermuda 1,3,4,5 & X, from Expérience. But most of the time, he likes to let the days pass by, watching for the birds, and hoping for a haïku to come.

"[Villieu’s] message is unmistakable and soulful: readers, if they live long enough, may become Josephine. In centering the day-to-day experience of elder care, Villieu and Sarfati show how that stage of life doesn’t have to be a tragedy—but only if society commits to doing better."

– PUBLISHERS WEEKLY