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Bastien Sittler

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Of concrete and Men

Since the very beginning of the ICN ARTEM building construction in September 2014 I have kept a regular follow-up of the works and shared my own view through a photographic coverage.

As a passionate photo enthusiast, my approach is sometimes technical and sometimes artistic but my aim is simple: to inform, understand, remember and why not…to dream.

My work pays tribute to the Men who work hard on the construction site and who, when not the subject matter of my photographs themselves, become the builders.

 

My path to photography

I bought my first camera 10 years ago. Having no technical background, I started taking hundreds, even thousands of photographs in order to gain a good understanding of the basics of photography.

Three years later, while on a long trip in India, I made a series of photographic coverages for the benefit of the Mann Deshi Foundation, a foundation whose aim is to give Indian rural women access to knowledge and capital enabling them to become entrepreneurs.

I came back home with more than 3000 photographs and the desire to upgrade my equipment to a professional level.

Over time, photography became part of my daily routine at work where I started to share pictures of major events held at ICN BS.

In 2014, the launching of the ICN ARTEM construction site became my new playground…and a new way of expressing myself.

This was the beginning of my own construction site: I paid regular visits to the surroundings of the site which resulted to the creation of a photographic album counting up to 1300 pictures to this day.

At first it enabled me to share the progress of the construction with my colleagues. Later on, I gained the right to access the restricted area of the construction site.

This was a major shift in my work: approaching the core of the construction site enabled me to give my photographs a more intense and human dimension.

It is this particular approach of my work which attracted the attention of the communication department of some of the main construction companies on the site (Eiffage, BIG France).

The most touching recognition of my work, came from the workers themselves. While reticent at first, they ended up accepting my presence in their working environment and I came to be considered as the one who was able to bring their thankless work into the limelight and reveal the Man in the center of an ocean of concrete.

It’s my turn to express my gratitude to all those who have been encouraging and supporting me all through my work.

I extend my gratitude to the organizers of the ARTEM OCC event who in granting me the opportunity to expose this three yearlong project offer me the chance to share with YOU today this exhibition, naturally entitled…: “Of concrete and Men”

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