General Entry - Emerging Talent Awards
Road signs in the Sahel.
This series results from a month of wandering by bicycle in a so-called deserted space from South Morocco to Mauritania.
Along the way in each town, the inhabitants try to put you off because of the distance and water shortages. At police checkpoints they warn :
" Watch out, there is nothing on this road until the next town. Get into a taxi ".
When crossing this territory at top speed in a car, one gets the impression this is a No Man's land, an empty territory.
However, when you take your time, your eye becomes accustomed to this peculiar environment. When you finally look around, you realize that these vast spaces are inhabited by camel drivers, fishermen, soldiers, farmers, solitary walkers, meteorite hunters...
On this straight track, a road sign system is set up by locals to indicate fishing spots, huts, military camps, crops growing in greenhouses, all of which are invisible from the asphalt. This is the art of indicating with whatever is lying around.
These reassuring sculptures of waste are archives of the passage of humans in this endless landscape. These objects express a human presence linked to the modern world, using fishermen’ crates, the Malian truck driver’s jerry can, or the lonely walker’s flip-flops.
These pyramids built from recycled rubbish erected along the roadside stand up to the elements like totems and offer landmarks in this flat scenery where everything is endlessly blended.
(This series was selected by the SFR Jeunes Talents / Les Rencontres d'Arles 2014,