Boijeot & Renauld: Update #3 (9th Street and Broadway)


Today completes the third weekend in a row that French public performance artists have invited you over for coffee on Broadway in New Yorks busiest borough. Boijeot, Renauld and their trusty photographer Clement just awoke from one of their coldest nights (36° F, 3° C) in their handmade pine beds on the Great White Way.

Stopping by to carve some early Halloween jack-o-lanterns, we saw their noses were red and tongues a little less chatty as they sat at the wooden table recounting the days/weeks events here, just around the corner from Astor Place barbers. As we talked and traded stories, one by one they each slipped away to go to a nearby gym to take a hot shower and returned smiling and content.


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The last week brought them to Times Square, Herald Square, Union Square – each uniquely different and overrun with hundred-a-minute crowds, creating a potherous plume of activity swarming around them as they hang out and have coffee unfettered.

And the questions keep coming: “Is this a demonstration?”, “Are you guys selling this furniture? Who made it?”, and “Can I ask you what this is all about?”. Fatigue has begun to manifest and even though they probably explain their project in their sleep as cars whiz by at night, Sabastian looks somewhat mournfully at us to see if we will jump in with the answer this time. “These are two French artists doing a public interactive performance on Broadway. They have been traveling south on Broadway five blocks at a time for 23 days. You are welcome to come have a seat at the table if you like.”


Boijeot & Renauld getting a helpful hand from good Samaritans. (photo © Jaime Rojo)

They talk about an interview they did here with a reporter from Le Monde, about a surprise visit from two of their best friends from back home in Nancy who walked up and tapped them on the shoulder. They reminisce about all the people who have happily helped carry the many pieces of furniture a few blocks with them. They marvel about the variety of prices of tobacco in New York with a security guard who walks by to check out the pumpkin carving. “Yo, these (cigar) prices are Manhattan prices man. I have my girl from down south bring me my cigars.” He brandishes a box of ivory plastic tipped medium sized brown cigars. “Depends on the neighborhood you are in – these can run you 8,9 dollars. These right here are 5 across the street.”

As they head toward Houston Street today they know soon they will be Soho and then Chinatown. By Saturday night it will be Battery Park if all goes well. You still have time this week to stop by for a cup of coffee and a chat.


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)


Boijeot & Renauld (photo © Jaime Rojo)