‘Le Jardin aux Jouets’, Raw Art House in Gravelines, 59, France.
On my way to a David Lynch lithography exhibition last summer, I stumbled upon a Raw Art House in Gravelines, 59, France, and stopped to take pictures and videos. There was no sign and I could not talk to the owner, but I found out from the blog of Jean-Michel Chesné that this place is called ‘Le jardin aux Jouets’ (‘The toy Garden’) and the artist is Cyril Roussel, a retired slaughterhouse worker.
I have a long standing interest in Raw Art, especially in those artists that turn their whole house into their lifelong artwork. I feel this is the most literal illustration of how we reconstruct the outside world to match our inner world. What most people do secretly through secret imaginative play or repressed fantasies, Raw artists do it literally on a physical territory.
These photos are not ‘art’ because I’m merely documenting someone else’s art, however, I am interested in documenting what I call ‘Raw Houses’ (i.e. Raw Art shown in the artist’s house rather than in museums) as an ongoing documentary project.