Curatorial project, supported by the SGP and GEP,
A city is a permanent construction site, a "lieu infini" - an infinite place - this project curated 5 positions of 6 different artists in the city of Créteil, a suburb of Paris. The invited participants were Charlotte Seidel, Ememem, Pamela Haydamous and Androphyne. Our team consisting of a landscape architect, 3 sculptors and 2 dancers worked around the SGP construction site of the new trainstation for 3 entire months. Starting out with on site workshops to get a feel of the place we went on to create site-specific installations with it all culminating in "The Grand Detour" where we invited people once more to embrace the detours that life has to offer because you never know what waits for you on that extra mile.
Find more context on the interactive map at www.Deviations-Volontaires.Fr - for the duration of the project the site served as a map to navigate the spectators towards the installations, events and even just some found situations that the participating artists deemed interesting to share.
We set up our tables on a warm spring day without anouncing anything to the public in order to not attract art-spectators but to catch the passersby off-guard and work with the real people of the neighborhood. 5 Stations invited these neighbors to participate in the creation of the works to come. I did a workshop creating street-signs that may be needed to better the flow of and communication with the people using the streets.
Pamela Haydamous invited to discover the plants hidden between the big buildings of the concrete jungle. Ememem shared his deep knowledge of mosaics by inviting to create a small mosaic for anyone interested. Charlotte Seidel created a mapping of the local surfaces by technique of "frottage" while Androphyne made the curious dwellers take part in their action "Ceci n'est pas une performance" where people were blindfolded and equipped with headphones to move through their known spaces deprived of any "normal" use of their senses.
With the insights gathered through the workshops, the artists then proceeeded to set up installations that would in the best case reflect on their prior experiences in the neighborhood. Every participant worked in his or her own way, due to which the installations ranged from shrill and colorful patches of Plastic bricks and Mosaics to very quiet and ephemeral interventions like the imprints of bicicle wheels around a leaking fountain and confetti inside spiderwebs or interventions blocking the passage. The idea was to make people go look for these interventions by checking the instagram and website or just simply following the installed streetsigns.
Finally a set up in a small street between the construction site and the Exit of the Metro Creteil- L'Échat provided with a condensed location to showcase the results of the workshops and interventions as well as a synopsys of the prior work in the shape of new interventions, localized in this confined space. There was a passage-way that let you go through and on with your day as normal or an entry to a maze-like installation with construction barriers and streetsigns provided by the technical direction of the City of Créteil where you were invited to review but also to participate in new actions. The event lasted for two days.
Go to www.Deviations-Volontaires.fr to see all installations, events and info about the participants and sponsors.