lundi, février 28, 2005


Do the world need jackalopes? Yes of course. Many species are about to disappear, even amongst the imaginary ones. We have to protect imaginary animals as we protect real animals. Who wants to become the Brigitte Bardot for imaginary species? There is less work to do.

If you watch this jackalope attentively you will notice that he is wearing a mask, which means he is a fake one and nothing but a vulgar rabbit. Which doesn't mean that we don't have to protect an animal who pretends to belong to an imaginary species while being a real animal. It's his own choice and nobody could blame such a rabbit. Unless it's a fox.

If a fox which is a real animal wants to make me believe that he's a real jackalope (an imaginary rabbit wearing horns), wether he thinks I am totally nuts and he wants to trick me, or he has a serious problem with his fox identity. And there is no Lacan-esque Brigitte Bardot of the imaginary animals who could help him.

Drawing by Florence Manlik.

jeudi, février 24, 2005


Michel Colombier died on 14th november 2004 in Santa Monica. He was born in 1939. Colombier’s father was a shoe repairer from Lyon and also a violonist amateur. Colombier moved to Paris when he was 18. After his military service he started to work as a composer, turning the french musique de variété into pop (« Messe pour un Temps présent » with Pierre Henry, « Anna’s » soundtrack with Gainsbourg ; more recently Colombier worked with Air and Madonna). This is what some official biographies say.

Michel Colombier was un ami d’enfance of my father, they were in the same school in Mulhouse and shared the same bande de copains. My dad told me that Colombier’s father was a musician at l’Orchestre de l’Opéra de Mulhouse…

Coming back to Paris, I was thinking about it in the train (the last non-TGV train in France for such a long distance). I found it strange that the different bios are not clear about the father's profession, as if it was better to recompose the past with a shoe-repairer mélomane instead of a violonist (who used to be a shoe-repairer). Thinking more and more about it for almost 5 hours, I noticed that both instruments, the shoe and the violin, have strings.

mercredi, février 23, 2005


What I need the most right now is good teeth. Because il faut de bonnes dents pour écrire de la poésie. The picture was taken in 1993 when I was teething in Marseille, the poecity. We lived near Gare Saint Charles, in Belsunce.

Le jeu des pièces Toog: If someone sends me a picture taken at the same place in the same cafe, wearing a white Marcel tee-shirt, he wins a toog silver coin. With a toog silver coin you can buy a genuine toog milk tooth.

mardi, février 22, 2005


"Sie sind das Mensch-Tier, das Tier. Sie sind das pulsende Leben, das wir vergessen haben" (from an anonymous letter to Klaus Kinski, Paris 1989). Movie as a panic. This is the cinema I love the most. Kinski in Aguirre or Christopher Walken in Wild Side by Donald Cammel (1995).

dimanche, février 20, 2005

Fondation Vasarely inside

In 1993 when we were living in Marseille, I wanted to visit the Fondation Vasarely in Aix-en-Provence. But it was closed for a long long time: the director embezzled a lot of money. He also was the doyen of the law faculty in the same city!

Years later, the same man became the personal law consultant of Togo's ex-dictator Eyaméda. He helped to by-pass the Togo's constitution recently, so that the dictator's son could take his father's seat. He is what we call a typical françafrique white collar hooligan.

In 1995 we visited the Vasarely Foundation and I must say it was an enchantment. I also had a bizarre feeling, as if the artist had a strong désir de domination. It's not surprising to see this strange connection today.

jeudi, février 17, 2005


I started to learn éwé (dialect of sud Togo) in march 2001 for preparing an utopic trip to Togo. I was meeting a man from Togo and we were exchanging bons procédés: notions of french littérature in exchange for the éwé b-a-b-a.

I loved to learn éwé but after 3 months, I became angry with my teacher since he wasn't preparing anything whereas I was. He was just asking me: "what would you like to learn today?" We choosed the cafés under the Louvre (Carousel du Louvre) as a classroom but it smelled of paella.

When the spring came, we went to the Jardin des Tuileries.

The only phrase I do remember is:

"Mou lé dou molou" (je mange du riz).

lundi, février 14, 2005


Is an anagram a good reason to travel? Yes, of course. I used to want to go to TOGO and call an album GO TO TOGO. But it's not the right time for doing that. Also it's rather about GOing TO than going to TOGO. Maybe it will be called GOTO. The cover: I wanted to ask my mother to make an oil painting of the dictator Eyaméda who died recently and replace his head with mine because every artist is a dictator. But now it doesn't make sense anymore.

Général Idi Amin Dada, Barbet Schroeder, France, 1974

Photo : Nestor Almendros.
Son : Alain Sempe.
Musique : Idi Amin Dada.

In this hilarious autobiography about dictator Amin Dada (Ouganda), you see the General, a good friend of Président de la République Française, in his everyday life. For instance, he's collecting money and food in Ouganda for helping the british people since he has heard of economical problems. He's making a conference in front of the Ouganda Air Force (2 pilots), saying "a good pilot doesn't think of coming back when he's going on a mission". You see him in his family unable to remember the name of a child and so on...

Michèle Alliot-Marie, our Ministre des Armées, said about Togo : "Le temps des coups d'état en Afrique est terminé". This sentence sounds post-colonialist, a lot. We have not the right to say that, like that.

dimanche, février 13, 2005


Antoine told us this story: when he was at the cinema school in Paris he decided to make a documentary about football and supporters with a friend. They both went to Brussels for the 1985 Finale de la Coupe d'Europe (Liverpool/Juventus) in the Heysel stadium. They collected a lot of pictures of panic, corpses and agonizing people.

They decided they wouldn't make anything out of these images. They opened the camera and veiled (destroyed) the film.

jeudi, février 10, 2005

Marie Pour Mémoire

Philippe Garrel: Marie pour Mémoire, with Zouzou. Philippe Garrel was only 20 years old when he shot this movie in 1967 and he won the first price in Hyères because he was like Rimbaud, a genius at his young age.


Peut-être existe t-il une autre histoire de l’art. Celle qui nous est présentée étant liée au monde de la marchandise, on ne peut pas la croire entièrement.

Dans l’histoire des affects humains, le sentiment qui l’a emporté est « amour ».

Je peux imaginer un territoire du ressenti dans lequel le lexique des sentiments ‘vainqueurs’ comporterait au lieu du mot « amour », quelque chose à inventer qui signifierait « mouvement de va et vient discontinu entre soi et l’autre ».

Ce sentiment existe, mais il ne porte pas de nom.

Dans son effort de vérité, l’histoire de l’art anonyme, histoire anonyme de l’art, pourrait rejoindre celle des affects anonymes, qui sont les sentiments humains les plus partagés mais aussi les moins nommés car les plus équivoques, les moins univoques.

Cette histoire serait aussi celle des crétins, des fous, des idiots et des pauvres.

(I don’t know how to translate… you decide that history of all the arts is too simple as the categories of human feelings are.)

mardi, février 08, 2005

Zanzibar girls

"Between 1968 and 1970, Sylvina Boissonnas, a young French heiress and patroness of the arts, financed about fifteen films. "Zanzibar" signifies an informal collaboration of about a dozen persons who took their name from the Maoist country of Zanzibar. All of these films reflect in one way or another the heady spirit and times of May 1968. The Zanzibar films make use of a minimal script, non-actors, improvisation, and repetition. The Zanzibar "movement" had very strong ties with the world of fashion (Zouzou, Caroline de Bendern, Nico). They were the dandys of May 1968. Several of the participants spent time in Warhol's Factory in 1966-67. These films represent the French equivalent of the American underground". (Sally Shafto, shortened by Toog).

Many of the Zanzibar movies were screened this week-end during the Film Festival my friend Olivier Pierre's programming in Saint-Denis. The two girls on the photo are Jackie Raynal (filmmaker, monteuse de Rohmer, she also used to run a french cinema in New York) and Caroline de Bendern (model, she was "la Marianne de mai 1968"). The spirit of Zanzibar is closer to me than the french Nouvelle Vague, because it's art, not cinema. It's cinema with no plan de carrière.

samedi, février 05, 2005

nico's grandson

The little boy on the photo is Nico's grandson (Ari Boulogne's son) and he is wearing the sailor sweater that his dad wore on a Velvet Underground photo. In this Paris show (july 2002) the boy came to the stage and accompanied randomly my songs. My brother Julien, who's blind, sayed: "I loved the strange piano that you added to the songs."

Ari told me that he was keeping Nico's harmonium under his bed. It was Nico's only possession. I wrote this poem for him and for her after this conversation. It is also inspired by the beautiful Philippe Garrel's movie with Nico, La Cicatrice intérieure.

Mondo Harmonium

Ari sous son lit
garde l’instrument indien;
la nuit il entend la soufflerie
de l’instrument,

et la musique grave de sa mère
qui vient d’en haut,
à la manière d’un vent de sable
qui souffle sur le monde.

vendredi, février 04, 2005


Rex is cute
Rex est mignon
Rex kawai dess (?)
Rex ist schön

Black markings don't make the cow.

jeudi, février 03, 2005


Karaoké Kalk first tour started in Paris yesterday evening at Point Ephémère. The venue was closed: the police was taking (foot?) prints, since Point Ephémère sound system had been stolen during the night. The first date of the tour was a very sad evening for Takeo Toyama who flew from Japan with two girls playing cello and marimba. The girl's cello had the right to have its own seat in the Berlin/Paris flight without paying a supplement. Thanks Lufthansa! We went with Karaoke Kalk boss, Thorsten Lütz, along the canal Saint Martin in a bar called Chez Prune, were we drank wine until late. Thorsten said that he has to be careful when playing in Lubjana, Zagreb, Belgrade, to not say: "we are so happy to play here in Serbia" if it's Croatia or Slovenia...

Tell me the distance I will tell you the direction.

Here is a poem I wrote today (if someone wants to write a translation I will put it on Mitsu)

M'être plaint des bruits que produisaient
Le jour dans la forge aux fruits de ce Géant

A fait se lever en moi une lâcheté
Qui ne m'autorise plus que la Nuit.

mercredi, février 02, 2005


Suspicious dogs make good models. Les chiens méfiants font de bons modèles.

mardi, février 01, 2005


In Occident, a long tradition has made of Orient a territory of dream and fantasy were all excesses of imagination and experience were possible. The birth of oriental radicalism has destroyed this rêverie which lasted for centuries in music, litterature, painting. We are more than partly responsible of killing this creative and very old dream (from Montesquieu and even before to Burroughs and after). People need re-orient-ation, to find new forms and plenty of new dreamy territories.