In recognition of Valentine’s Day, the executive board of Illinois State’s French Honor Society, Pi Delta Phi, reached out to ISU language clubs, students, faculty and staff who speak other languages to participate in the online Le mur de l’amour (the wall of love). This project is based on Le mur des je t’aime in Montmartre, Paris created in 2000 by calligraphist Fédéric Baron and mural artist Claire Kito that is composed of 612 tiles of enameled lava, on which the phrase ‘I love you’ is featured 311 times in 250 languages.
Pi Delta Phi organized this interactive art piece a few years ago in Stevenson Hall and agreed that it would again be a good way to create community and closeness, especially during these isolating times of global pandemic. According to en.Parisinfo.com, the wall symbolizes parts of a broken heart and the human race torn apart, which the wall tries to bring back together.
Pi Delta Phi President Savanna Wilder created this COVID-19 version on Padlet so that despite the distance, all students, faculty, and staff could still have the opportunity to take part.
“Language gives love form. It can create a giggle, a warm fuzzy feeling, and/or deep sentiment. During this pandemic, we have lost a big part of this personal human connection but we can still spread love virtually through lyrics, phrases, and pictures in numerous language to show that love is still within our grasp and that it can still produce a giggle, a warm fuzzy feeling, and/or deep sentiment across our community and the world,” Wilder said.
Expressions of all kinds of love have been left on ISU’s version of Le mur de l’amour in languages from Swahili to Korean to Arabic to Japanese, as well as common and less common Romance languages, Scandinavian languages, and others.
Students interested in French Conversation Hour or French Honor Society are welcome to contact via email or follow on Instagram at @isupideltaphi or Facebook at French Clubs @ ISU.