The train line Paris St Lazare – Mantes La Jolie runs from the western suburbs into the French capital. FUZI and his group UV (Ultra Violent) used the “double étages” and “trains gris” for fifteen years as work basis and image carrier, as their territory and mistress. “FUZI,” “RAP,” “SALO,” “KISS,” and “VOYOU” drip down the smooth grey surfaces of the functionalist architecture. The leather on the benches is slashed; the windows smashed.
This book is a collection of photographs created between 1996 and 2001, an archive of vandalism, a contemporary document of “brutal insouciance” accompanied by the artist’s poems and texts. It wasn’t just about slamming, hammering and smearing one’s name everywhere to become known, it was about leaving behind a trace, both in the space and in the heads of the passengers.
This required a rigid approach: employing the surveillance methods of the rail police (SUGE) and conductors, only with reverse circumstances. A routine that was synchronized with the gaps in train schedules and intervals between security checks; rhythmized by station stops and coach compartments; locating, painting over and photographing—maintaining the line. Within the rules and regulations of society, they created Temporary Autonomous Zones for themselves, in which they could briefly experience absolute freedom, expressed through an archaic “aestheticism of chaos.”