All posts tagged: Hotel Empire

Clément Martin : Wishes & Hopes for 2017

Clément Martin : Wishes & Hopes for 2017


As we near the new year we’ve asked a special guest every day to take a moment to reflect on 2016 and to tell us about one photograph that best captures the year for him or her. It’s an assortment of treats for you to enjoy and contemplate as we all reflect on the year that has passed and conjure our hopes and wishes for the new year to come. It’s our way of sharing the sweetness of the season and of saying ‘Thank You’ for inspiring us throughout the year.

The self-possessed savoir faire of a Frenchman in New York is not so surprising, but try keeping up with photographer Clément Martin who literally slept on the streets of New York for a month and see how elegant you will remain. As the official photographer for conceptual street performance artists Boijeot & Renauld, Clément has been traveling and shooting on the street for the last three years in Tokyo, Brussels, Berlin, Venice, Paris, Zurich, Dresden, Basel, and of course New York. Since Times Square is such a famous place to be for New Year’s Eve Clément shares with BSA readers this scene of repose suitable for enjoying the spectacular view with opera singer Dan Cory singing Carmen classics in bed.

Artists: Boijeot & Renauld
Location: Times Square, New York
Photograph by Clément Martin

Each “performance” is unique, and for the New York one called “Hotel Empire” we used living units (a furniture assortment that includes beds, tables and chairs) to occupy public space in the city, setting up camp in various neighborhoods, regularly moving from one street to another.

The artists (and I) regularly move the furniture by hand from one stop to another and we offer all pieces of furniture- available to anyone who wants to take a nap, have a coffee or simply to chat. The performance brings intimacy in the public space, since the furniture can be (and really is) used by everyone.

You get to interrupt the city rhythm by sitting or laying down, but on a social interaction level, it also offers a chance to the people involved to create a shared memory

“Mental graffiti” some will call this.

What I’m sure of is that on this October day in Times Square we offered the opportunity to the man in this picture to live in this place that never sleeps for a few minutes- part of the 732 continuous hours we lived on New York City streets for this performance.


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