Concrete Castles

During the decade of my life in the French capital, I've noticed that not many people are aware that there are two images of contemporary Paris. On one side there is the splendour of Paris historic city centre, on the other side the poverty and massive suburban tower blocks and slabs. The vast majority of Parisian suburbs were constructed during the major urbanization projects which took place after the Second World War.

In this project, which is still in the making, I explore how the human-created environment influences behaviour and value formation among tenants. I visited three locations, the city archives, and studied architectural sketches in my research. The locations are different but still share some common features of postmodern architecture such as monumentality, lack of natural surfaces and lack of street as the main units of organization of everyday life. Instead of streets, there are corridors that lead like a labyrinth from one part of the complex to another. It is this lack of streets that makes these places surreal. Finally, through experiences with the tenants of the blocks, I explore what it means to live and grow up in such a monumental environment that favours the development of crime.