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Christian Boltanski

The Inhabitants of The Louvre

160 pages
17,5 x 23 cm
language: French
coedition Dilecta / Éditions du Musée du Louvre
release: 2009
ISBN 978-2-916275-63-5

On the occasion of the programme “The Vertigo of Lists” co-ordinated by Umberto Eco in the Louvre’s auditorium in November 2009, Christian Boltanski and Jacques Roubaud conceived The Inhabitants of The Louvre, a tribute to the art of the list.

The book explores the poetic resources of the list: the effects of accumulation, editing, Oulipian games…

The writer Jacques Roubaud first puts forward a series of thematic lists, designed with great humour and finesse, from the global list of the ‘inhabitants of the Louvre’ (a mixture of artists and employees), then the list of ‘bugs’:

BALEN Hendrick Van
BRAQUE Georges

 Christian Boltanski then produces a series of photomontages by assembling the faces of artists (self-portraits) and the faces of members of staff, photographed for the occasion, along with a single, undifferentiated list of all the staff of the Louvre and the artists featured in the museum’s collection, creating a sort of remote directory of all those who, known or unknown, artists or employees, make the reputation of the Louvre.