Extra Muros chapter 4, Unrealised
La Parisienne Building, Hamani street, Algiers
Initially planned for 2008, 2009, then 2011
After paying tribute to the Casbah in the chapter 1, I have been very naturally interested in the colonial architectural legacy, another fundamental side of Algiers.
In this project, I proposed to respond to a controversy that rocked certain specialised architectural or real estate circles in Algiers.
They protested against the construction of a new building, in place of the one known as La Parisienne which was threatened with ruin.
As a result, there has long been a gap in a privileged location in the centre of Algiers, an over-protected gap which everyone states claim to.
I proposed to temporarily redraw the shape of the ancient building with support beams, in order to reveal its ghost. I aimed to film this installation and project this documentation in an art gallery nearby as a way of closing the loop. I wanted to intervene in the urban space, restoring the artistic gesture in an official art gallery.
Once La Parisienne demolished, I started a bureaucratic marathon between mayor, ancient and new owner of this site, to obtain the authorization to intervene on this gap.
Even though this was a private space, doing a public thing still sounds scary.
And the project remain unrealised…