A b o u t S a i n t - E t i e n n e
In order to describe my ill-feeling concerning the evolution of the city and in the very moment when I was making
my first architecture
photographs, I started to photograph my food.
The process was always the same- just before
cooking, I photographed, on my kitchen table, what I was going to eat,
without special setting nor
I had the intuition that it exists a close relationship between
architecture and food.
As we were living in the
passage from raw to cooked through the mediation of fire, we experiment
now the passage
from frozen to cooked through the microweave oven.
Didn't we loose the braised, the
grilled, the slow cooked in the process?
Do we still have a
relationship with the raw?
Is the frozen food still
Cooking did the passage from nature to culture; now, through the
microweave oven heating of pre-cooked frozen
food, we are transferred
from culture(?) to culture(?) (from artificial to artificial).
St-Etienne, industrial city from the nineteenth century, work was
mainly hard, physical work.
The food was pork, tripe,
It was a black city, a city of
coal and fire, fire from foundries, subterranean fire. Houses were made
of stone, of
clinker, with brick (baked
clay) around the windows.
Now the coal mines are closed, most of factories too , lots of
people are unemployed.
To give the city a modern image, a new trend
develops, of pasting ornament on otherwise ordinary buildings:
columns, statues, prefabricated, ready to use
The city is covered with colored sugar.
These changes and the way
they were managed drove me to take St Etienne as a model to put the
of urbanism, public space,
citizenship and local democracy.