This piece is the result of work done in summer 2014. After choosing a sample from a score of Zus in Seine-Saint-Denis where operations were being carried out by the National Urban Renovation Agency, Fougeirol drew up a map. Represented as black dots on the same scale, these zones could be read as blind spots in the eye, where the visual nerve takes the place of the photoreceptive rods.
The contours of these zones are determined by streets or parcels. Fougeirol has given form to their exhaustive toponymic nomenclature. Juxtaposed, ordered, these names adumbrate a strange Lettriste poem with associations that are at once banal, arbitrary and singular.
Fougeirol has systematically explored these physical limits and produced images, following a strict protocol: digital camera with an uncentred “architectural” lens placed at eye-height on the tripod, so as to be as close as possible to ordinary perception, with an horizontal format, so as to be as objective as possible, free of bias. The continuous projection of this collection of documentary photographs in black-and-white, taken on the front lines between city and city, between “zone” and suburb, between what is considered sensitive and what is not, this film of a reality that is at once banal and provisional is both a document and an artwork.
The document shows the contemporary banality of public spaces, thoughtlessly laid out, unthinkingly “stuck together” and designed essentially for mechanical traffic. Marked by signs that are empty of meaning, they are unthought spaces inhospitable to any kind of city life.
This work probes the gap between the real and its representations, which hardly reflect those of the various players in urban development, foremost among them the architects.
Born in 1962, photographer and artist Benoît Fougeirol lives and works in and around paris. for some years now he has been exploring the uncertain zones of the city limits, collecting images. At once topographic and poetic, his approach captures the unsuspected, silent wealth of this space where greenery meets asphalt. The results can be seen in the book autour / around (éditions vmcf, 2010). Since then, he has concentrated on the so-called “sensitive” areas of the city. he has under- taken a methodical inventory of these territories whose reality exceeds or belies the simple clichés pasted over it.
2018 non ready–mades in the photographer’s archive, galeria asymetria warsaw – group show
2018 the very landscape of abandon, galeria asymetria warsaw – solo show with jerzy lewczynski archive
2017 paysages français, bibliothèque nationale de france paris – group show
2017 tentative d’épuisement iii, volume paris/punto de fuga – group show
2017 the plates of the present so far, galerie praz delavallade paris – group show
2016 botanic, deyrolle paris, photo saint–germain – solo show
2016 (zus), luma dummy award, short list, rencontres d’arles – group show
2015 ligne de fronts, école nationale d’architecture, paris la villette – solo show
2015 dust, the plates of the present, baxter street new york – group show 2014 tentative (s) d’épuisement, cruce contemporaneo madrid – group show 2013 dust photogram project, ivry–sur–seine – group show
2013 botanic, temple galerie, paris – solo show
2012 autour / around, domeau & pérès, la garenne colombes – solo show
2012 la poesie austere du reel, clair galerie, saint paul de vence – group show
2010 autour / around, domeau & pérès, paris – solo show
2009 la librairie, galerie john tevis paris – group show
2009 marimage, galerie meninos de luz, rio de janeiro – group show
2007 la villa arpel, galerie de la manufacture de sevres, paris – group show
2007 la villa arpel, domeau & peres, la garenne colombes – solo show 2004 autour de cyrille putman, galerie enrico navarra, paris – group show 2002 galerie serge aboukrat, paris – group show
2002 galerie nathalie pariente, paris – group show
2002 la périphérie, malakoff – group show
2001 galerie serge aboukrat, paris – group show
2000 recyclages, mayers–aebel & mc hale, paris – solo show
2000 polymères, colette paris – solo show
1999 sédiments, mac sallaumines – solo show
1999 cinquantenaire tati, flux cyrille putman – group show
1998 crestet centre d’art hors les murs – solo show
1997 l’arriere–pays, cac château des adhémar montelimar – group show
(zus) mad adagp award 2018
centre national des arts plastiques, paris la defense collection lhoist, belgique
bibliothèque kandinsky, musée d’art moderne, paris caisse des dépôts et consignation, paris
musée carnavalet, paris
bibliothèque nationale de france, paris
(zus), x artists’ books 2017 botanic, temple éditions 2013 cote 74, éditions jp robert 2013
autour / around, éditions vmcf 2010
sédiments, mac sallaumines1999