Who am I ?
Born and raised in the parisian suburb, where we usually kick the ball with friends to spend the time, I early started to explore my neighbourhood.
I enjoyed going to places where nobody usually goes. I was looking for another point of view on my city, another atmosphere, the unexpected calm in the urban environment.
At this time rooftops and others high located spots had my predilection.
Slowly I started to visit all the city had to offer :
Under construction buildings, abandoned houses, rooftops and even some night visits of the local amusement park.
However the city quickly became to narrow and I was going round in circles. I needed something else !
The answer came through a friend of mine, with whom I used to explore the city. It was the “petite ceinture” in Paris, a former railway network.
We searched a way to get in there, and that’s how we discovered the word that qualifies our practice : urbex.
Thus we discovered a huge hidden world and since then we regularly visit all kind of buildings : castle, hospital, shut down factory…
Photography became self-evident alongside my explorations. All these places are different and I could feel a special atmosphere in each of them, calm, anxiety, joy…
They are still alive and tell us a part of their stories, of their pasts.
I take photos of them to try to catch those feelings, to fix them in order to give them a tangible form.
I am still far from being a pro, but if these pictures make you travel and feel those places soul, then my goal is reached.
What is urban exploration ?
Urban exploration, or shortly called urbex, consists in visiting buildings built by human beings, hidden places, forgotten, hardly reachable or shut down.
Most of the time I currently explore abandoned locations, but you still may find me on a roof or in a cave.
If you wish to know more about the subject, the Wikepedia page about the subject is quite well written.
As you may imagine, this activity is quite underground, not really legal and most of all dangerous.
As a matter of fact, I wouldn’t tell you to practice urbex. I won’t be responsible of any consequences of its practice from my readers and I won’t share any locations.
However, here are few rules I follow while exploring :
- I never force an entry nor break anything in a place.
- I don’t steal, my purpose is only to look around, listen, enjoy and take pictures.
- I rarely explore alone and I always warn someone about my destination.
- I at least take with me a flashlight, strong blue jean and sweatshirt, hiking boots and a knife.
- Most of all I never take uncalculated risk. For example, if I feel that the floor is going to fall, even just a bit, I don’t walk on it.
“Take only pictures, leave only footprints, kill nothing but time”