A derelict building steeped in history. A rabbit’s warren of run down rooms and crumbling walls. The perfect pad for a group of street artists. And an ephemeral exhibition that will never physically be seen by the general public.
Built in 1885, Paris’ historic Les Bain-Douches building has seen some very different lives, first as a civic bathhouse (where Marcel Proust would apparently come for his daily dip), and then a grandiose discotheque until its closure in 2010. And now, artist’s residence.
Current owner Jean Pierre-Marois is set to unveil another new venue here in 2014, but as a send off to the old, he has gathered together some talented urban artists to turn it into a fleeting gallery and to leave their mark on what will soon be a demolished space. Aside from these peeks and photos captured by photographers Jerome Coton and Stephane Bisseuil, the exhibition – commissioned by Magda Danysz Gallery and titled Un Artiste Un Jour (‘One Day One Artist’) – will never be seen by the public. It’s completely an online show, and the work will be destroyed along with the building. Very much a unique concept.
Résidence d’Artistes has given a fitting tribute to the buildings previous incarnation, when artists and designers would come to play and dance and indulge in general debauchery. Everyone from Andy Warhol to Jean-Michel Basquiat, Yves Saint Laurent, Mick Jagger and Grace Jones, and contemporary fashionistas and actors including Kate Moss and her then lover Johnny Depp have savoured the hedonistic confines of this historic landmark. And now, the decayed space holds an experimental culture of another sort, if but for a short time.
Un Artiste Un Jour wraps up today, April 30th 2013. Watch the exhibition in progress on the clip below and be sure to look over the raw work of these talented street artists HERE.
The golden class of Street Art – d’ASH (Pays-Bas), L’Atlas (France), Futura (USA), Space INVADER (France), Jérôme MESNAGER (France), SKKI (France), SOWAT (France), STEN LEX (Italie), VHILS (Portugal), Gérard ZLOTYKAMIEN (France) etc…– breathing fresh life into the soul of the Bains.