André Mérian


For fifteen years André Mérian has devoted himself to exploring suburban landscapes in France and abroad. The photographic work of Mérian shows an interest in the built environment we experience within our everyday lives.

Mérian's images show peripheral areas, shopping centers, often chaotic architectural spaces humans construct and inhabit, the image look at the banal, everyday decor of these constructed landscapes. Past the border towns, the architecture takes on a new dimension, where the dummy, the temporary and renovations take over. The results are often confusing and ask questions about the fate of man in the aesthetics of chaos, putting the viewer on the edge of objectivity and subjectivity.

He was nominated for the Discovery Award at Arles 2009.

André Mérian is represented by Les Douches La Gallerie in Paris.



This collection of photographs represents everyday objects, collected in garbage containers near my home, in Marseille, and elsewhere. For a period of several months, I made a repetitive gesture of retrieving, storing and sorting of these "things" that seem derisory, banal, ordinary, used, consumed and rejected.

The photographs are done in a frontal way with a white background so that the objects preserves all its neutrality and that they're sculpture-like in order to evoke the din of the world.



Ouest explores uniformed suburbs, looking at the increasing urbanisation of these spaces brought on by the increase in roads and cars. Mérians interrogations make the space seem strangely sublime, the human there seems to be tolerated, almost as an intruder or as a spectator in this hybrid landscape. Avoiding the nostalgic postcard view often presented in landscape, Mérian's images question these spaces we are intimately familiar with.

This photographic series was produced during an artist residency with GwinZegal association in Britain 2008/2009 and supported by artothèque of Vitré.



Land was initiated by the Maison Descartes, French Institute of the Netherlands in Amsterdam and with Les Douches La Galerie in Paris in 2007.
André Mérian functions as an ethnologist, as an amused explorer, as a Baudelairian flâneur spotting where an idea of modernity went wrong. It's not a matter of his 're-monumentalizing' the motif, thus giving it an almost virtual aspect. On the contrary, in these images, what seems to exceed reality is based not only on that absolute banality of town and country planning but also on the elimination of any idea of nature.