Chemin faisant… A Walk Around The Block

Art Center

from 30 may to 25 July 2010

Céline Ahond, Dector & Dupuy, Jochen Dehn, Louise Hervé & Chloé Maillet, Sofia Hultén, Leopold Kessler, Wolf von Kries, Jirí Kovanda, Roman Ondák, Virginie Yassef



“One morning, gripped by a sudden impulse to go for a walk, I put my hat on and ran out of the work office, or phantasmagorical office, down the stairs and out into the street.”
Robert Walser, Der Spaziergang, 1917

More and more often, in the course of their work, artists wander out of the studio to pace the streets in search of inspiration. These insatiable observers pay extra attention to the details, signs and stories that shape the city, which they then use to build up their own narratives. The walk is set up as a method of writing, as the thread between encounters, connections and coincidences...


“A Walk Around the Block” brings together various artists who in turn propose various accounts of the city told through the prism of their perambulations, and for whom the walk becomes a space for enunciation, full of shortcuts and twists and turns. They update a forgotten figure of our past: the city wanderer, or flâneur, as coined by Baudelaire and described by Walter Benjamin – this solitary  walker who, by comparing the cityscape to the passing of time, turns the city into phantasmagoria.


The exhibition gambles on an improbable encounter between this Parisian figure of the 19th century and the extreme urban planning of the ville nouvelle, the ultimate utopia of 20th century France.


Artists were given a starting point by being asked to consider Marne-la-Vallée, this “promise of a town” thought up in the 70s, as a fertile ground for experiences. How can we reintroduce walking, lost time and narratives into this strictly organised network of streets? How can we create stories in a place with no history? How do we weigh individual use against political objectives? How do we inject a possibility for wandering into the established order?


The exhibition takes place both outside and inside, and is used as a base camp for group strolls in the surrounding cityscapes. The artists will take us out on bi-monthly ‘guided tours’ in the vicinity of the Ferme du Buisson, when we will be invited to renew our view of the city through shared experience...

In the Art Centre itself, we find works by these same artists which echo their excursions, as well as other works which highlight the relationship between the artists and the city, through their passion for local areas, close-ups, archaeology, local stories, the past and the future… The clear, easily understandable subtext of the city as it has been mapped, programmed, and monitored, suddenly stirred and blurred by the singular narratives that run through it.

sun 30 May at 1 pm


Events: Poursuites (Hercule et le fleuve de pierre), a guided walk with Chloé Maillet & Louise Hervé, and La Remise aux Fraises, a performance-conference by Jochen Dehn


Schedule of walking performances

sun 30 May at 2 pm

Louise Hervé & Chloé Maillet, "Poursuites (Hercule et le fleuve de pierre)"


sun 13 June at 3 pm

Dector & Dupuy, "Promenade"


sun 27 June at 3 pm

Céline Ahond, "La marche autour du cube"


sun 11 July at 3 pm

Jochen Dehn, "The Mere Fact That You Saw a Movement Doesn't Mean Something Changed"


infos pratiques

opening hours

Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday 2-7pm

By appointment during the week



€2, €1 concession, free of charge for members and under 12s



Guided tour every Saturday at 4pm



book on +33 (0)1 64 62 77 00 or