About Us

Places and Monuments

I unwittingly embarked on Places and Monuments several years ago, ever before I had even come up with a working-title for the project. The first time a monument appeared in my films was in: The Statue of Giordano Bruno (2005). In Herqueville I made my first tentative approaches with the minimalist animation that was later to become the trademark for the entire series (2007). Praha-Florenc (2009) was to mark the inauguration of the series Places and Monuments.  Thereafter came Place Carnot – Lyon (2011), Thunder River (2011), and John Cage – Halberstadt (2013). The video installation Berlin – The Passage of Time marks a new phase in the project's evolution. 

From the outset my aim was to film scenes from everyday life around monuments, or in those locations that could be considered as marking the passage of time, historical events, collective memory, or its opposite, that which has been forgotten. At once modest and ambitious in scope, my notion of “monuments” was thus vast. Since launching the project, I have during my ambles in various cities round the world come across monuments in all their guises: vibrant, forgotten, forlorn and even those that have vanished from the face of the earth. My modus operandi consists of a static shot over a protracted period, waiting, as it were, for something to happen. As a rule of thumb, something does always happen. At times, it only strikes me when viewing the rushes afterwards. I then latch onto a detail that enables me create from these unique situations allegories of the passage of time.

My first step is to fragment the footage so that I can subsequently recompose its constituent elements into a single entity with the help of digital tools. This “invisible” animation procedure entirely transforms the temporal flux without erasing the core of its reality. The next phase of the process involves subjecting this opaque block to a series of animated interventions, which lead it to an incandescent state comprising flashes of unexpected significance.