En los aires

Broken wall | Angle, La Roche-sur-Foron 2012 |
from 09 novembre to 21 décembre 2012

The Broken wall is a latticework made of red bricks. Here, it was broken like the one in the Pantin squat, where in September 2011, six Tunisians and Egyptians who espaced from the "Arab spring", died asphyxiated without being able to find the hole in the wall through which they had come in the day before.
curator : Triptik
« In September 2011, six people died in a fire at their squat in Pantin. Tunisians and Egyptians who had escaped from the "Arab Spring" had found and shared this address near the Paris ring road, in the town of Pantin.

As in all migrants’ squats, the "rooms" were given out according to the geographical origin of their occupants. The Tunisians from the port of Sfax gathered together in the room that overlooked the Roche passage. Those from Ben Guerdane had taken the room facing North, the one with the fenced windows.
As for the Egyptians, they isolated themselves in a condemned part of the building, which was reachable through a hole in the wall.
The fire started in the room where a 36 years old Egyptian was sleeping -a tough guy with thick eyebrows. While the others crowded up to twelve per room, he had managed to preserve his private space, known as "Alaa’s room".
Inside, he jealously guarded a collection of second-hand books that he hoped to resell -novels in French and in Arabic and "seen on TV" books recovered from the former tenant. More than a thousand books were piled up in boxes.
At night, to have a clear vision, Alaa used to light two or three candles that he sealed on a dresser with a bit of wax, as their was no electricity. The others imitated him and blew out the candles before going to sleep.
As for Alaa, he never put the candles out: the Egyptian "was afraid of the dark" -told one of the squatters- and "he let them burn until morning".
On the night of September 27 to 28, they were around twenty to sleep at the squat. »

according to the article written by Emeline Cazi and Elise Vincent, « Alaa's room », Le Monde, September 21, 2012