Interview with G in Paris

You took part of the french graffiti magazine Graff-it. I think you left them now. Do you consider you work as graffiti ?

[Jerome] I've got the luck to work among Graff'it redactionnal on 4 issues. But even i'm in love with all aerosol way of art, i don't think that sticking some posters in the street could be called "graffiti". It's not the same spirit and the same freedom in creation...there's no limit with graffiti 'cause it doesn't matter about format, size or choose the best support but a poster must do....

What made you start taking photos ?
[Jerome] When i understand that my brain won't be able to record all what i see everyday. I started with "only one use" easy cam, and took some holidays, friends and family pics. I lost most of my early pics....i'm not in love with organisation...

What does putting up your large photos in the streets bring to you ?
[Jerome] Since 3 years i lived in Paris, i've met some people like Jean Faucheur who show me the real art of sticking large posters in the street. Last year, Halieutik has an idea to create an happening "Art Is Stick" (it's now the name of our collective) around sticking some A3 in the street. We finally stick them near Eiffet Tower and this action was a terrible revelation for me. I want to show my photographic work to public and this alternative media is for me the best way to exhibite my pics.

Would you like to show them in galleries too ?
[Jerome] Of course yes, but i don't think i would exhibite the same things than i do in the streets. Every space (a town or a closed room) needs a special artistic reflexion about the best integration of the showed work and the supported space.

Just like djs are stuck to vinyls you seem to only use film and not digital cameras. Have you tried digital cameras ?
[Jerome] It's strange because i'm working everyday with a numeric and it's a really good stuff. But it's my own purpose thah i follow when i only want to work with argentic materials. With numeric u can shoot hundred pics and even check while shooting if it's good or not....traditional cameras doesn't work like that and i prefer to play with this substance of fate (u can see result only after a few days) and as i'm limited in the number of pics on a roll film (12, 24 or 36) i only shoot what it seem to be a really unmissable action.... since a few months i've worked with an old appareil, it's a Rolleiflex who takes some 6x6 pics. It's amazing to get back to this old way of photography, it's giving me very good lessons about shooting tips without any technology help.

Do you print for yourself ?
[Jerome] No. I don't have the materials to do that. At this time, i prefer to work with a guy called Claude Perrain who's got a small photo shop and who gave to me good advices. It's such a good collaboration since 2 years that he put each month a poster of my work in his window.

You made a series of car photos with each time a name on it. What does it mean ?
[Jerome] For me cars are the perfect illustration of our old economic organisation. At beginning XXe, car's production (Henry Ford) was a real revolution in building goods. But now cars are a sort of disease for the planet while its pollution (CO emission), with oil exploitation and with the strange behavior when human is a driver. I wanted to make people think about it so I began to stick a series of car's faces on the wall with their original number plate. But I was arrested while sticking and Police notified to me that showing number plates is more illegal than stick posters in the street. So as a number plate is finally somebody i change it into a fake firstname. Today, i've got almost 500 differents models of cars.

Do you plan what you're going to shoot, or do you go out and find good things ?
[Jerome] Since i was fed up to miss some unbelievable scenes of life, i always had a camera with me. So i've never plan anything, i only follow my feeling with what i'm watching. By walk or with my scooter, i shoot each time my heart reacts from something. I can't explain very well because it's only about sensations.

What is a good photo ?
[Jerome] 50% of hasard and 50% of love. I don't want to shoot nude femal walking in forest, it's not my aim. I prefer to report normal life events and if you love enough life, humans and earth i think you'll be able to find a magical side everywhere, sometimes happy or sad but that's life. Ying&Yang. There's no Good if there's no Bad.

Who are your favorite photographers ?
[Jerome] It's not a palmares, but names like Robert Doisneau, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Pierre-Henri Lartigue, James Natchway or Spencer Tunick for their visions of life. And Henry Chalfant for his vision of graffiti art.

Making graffiti is also having a particular relationship with urban cities... What does the city of Paris mean to you ?
[Jerome] I'm always a tourist in this town. I still don't know all the corners or the underground sides of the most visited city in the world. But Paris still remain for me a kind of culture and art center..even it's a not the real interpretation of its reputation. Paris has a too loud history to look future with new eyes. It became a sort of supermarket of regular and classic culture with musuems, etc....

Are there cities you would like to go ?
[Jerome] Cities i don't know like Berlin, Tokyo, New-York, Johannesburg but i dream about travelling to Iceland. But the most exciting will be to travel in space. Actually it "only" cost 5 millions dollars..maybe in 20 years it'll be cheaper....

Any upcoming projects, you would like to share with us ?
[Jerome] I'm working with Halieutik and Alexone on an exhibition in an old movie theatre in Paris XIIIe. I think it will be crazy cause we're going to "design" all the spaces of this place. It'll take place during the last weeks of september. You'll know more in a few weeks.... Also, i'm trying to update my online portfolio each months and i'm still looking for places or galleries to show my work

Any last word ?
[Jerome] " L'homme est naturellement bon, c'est la société qui le pervertit." Jean-Jacques Rousseau

3 silly questions :

hALTERophile or ALTERmondialiste (Alternative globalisation) ?
[Jerome] Altermondialist directly ! Only watch to to see real faces of all WorldWide Firms...

Nike or Naked ?
[Jerome] Naked with the same above comment. Imagine a world where everybody were nude....amazing !!

Pierre la Police or Fuck the Police ?
[Jerome] I love the work of the first. And "Fuck the Police" is not very clever. We can't live in our societies without a minimum of control. But today, it's really out of control....

Can you choose 2 flix extracted from ekosystem and tell us why you chose them ?
[Jerome] first one : i'd like to thank the artist named LE_COVER... i don't know him, is he italian ?...(in fact it's an italian crew)but i choose his Panda Crashed Tanker Graffiti... why ? because it's not common to see a modern and so huge graffiti without any sentence or slogan but that has got a powerfull political message....with a very clever recuperation of WWF logo... :) In this shit new millenium, i think that we must keep a social, ecological or political side of our piece of art... it's not enough to draw a small character on paper and to stick it in the street...this kind of alternative media is already a non-underground and a hype-as-God goal...Don't hide your ideas. Express them !

second one : it's both a choice and a big up ! i choose Alexone and his "commerçant de proximité"... it's one of his first large character sticking in streets... and i think that it's one of the best cause it's fun, the integration is perfect (only see the lamp and the cashier!) and it keeps a social side among its simplicity. It's just intelligent !

Can you choose 2 photos from you and tell us why you chose them ?
[Jerome] first one : i took this pic last summer unless thinking i'll get a result like this. The thema of this shoot is very clear, it's a good illustration of human evolution by foot wear. Nude, simple beach shoes and sneakers.... maybe in a few years with all our modernism, we won't be able to walk.... have a look to it's amazing...!!

[Jerome] The second one : I choose this one 'cause it's my first shoot of a street car crash. The scene is taken at Republique place in Paris. It's an old car (Austin Healey MKIII) in a contemporary action of too much speed. The driver checked the damage but after my flash worked while shooting he saw me and began to run after me.... it' s a very good souvenir of "photo volée" and this pic is the first visual i've sticked in the street with a big format.... to illustrate my mind about cars' way of life.

G street work on Ekosytem.
His photos on
His daily Fotolog.
To contact him : G's mail.


ekosystem august 2003