Was inspired by a visit to Le service des objets trouvés (lost and found) in Paris, where Karin tried to retrieve a brooch that she had lost (À la recherche du broche perdu).

At Le service des objets trouvés she was greeted with a gentle dose of French bureaucracy, waiting, filling out a green form, waiting in line, handing back the back from, receiving a number, waiting for number 147 to appear on screen in order to talk with an employee behind the window of counter 3 to then do some more waiting. In the room with old woodwork, there were a dozen people that waited impatiently for their turn. While waiting she realised she made a lot of effort to find a worthless piece in terms of material value. Fascinated with the idea of Le service des objets trouvés serving in a way as a massive archive of Parisian daily life, stuffed with trivial and extroadinary objets that people lost or forgot in the streets, public transport, parcs and cafés. She came up with the idea of incorperating the system in her practice.

 

Bijoux Bijoue Bijeux.

How to explores the bonds that imagination, text, image, object, time and space weave between themselves?

How to address questions of (im)material value?

How to make jewellery pieces incognito artistic narratives that circulate in daily life? 

A project aimed at experimenting on the intersection of (novelty) jewellery and their negative space. What does an idea, play and human intervention contribute to the meaning of these facets? An attempt to shift and potentially create new (increased) levels of (im)material value of worthless pieces by running them though the system of Le service des objets trouvés.

BIJOUX BIJOUE BIJEUX

The word bijoux, imagined as a verb.

Meaning: playing with jewellery, jewellery game.

LE SERVICE DES OBJETS TROUVÉS

​Le service des objets trouvés (lost and found) of the Paris police headquarters is one of the oldest in the world.It is a unique place in France and the largest center for found objects in Europe. The service is commonly known as "rue des Morillons". In total 168,000 objects are deposited there each year. Each month, nearly 14,000 properties of more or less value arrive from the RATP, the Post Office, police stations, Paris airports, shops, taxis and other places of passage. The objects are saved and stored in a room of 530 m2. On average 150 properties are returned daily. They are kept 4 months when they are worth less than 100 euros and 18 months for the most precious ones. But only 25% of them will one day find their owner.

An "objet trouvés" is an object that has been lost by its owner in a place open to the public and found by another person. The found object always belongs to its owner: it is thus advisable to the one who finds it to deposit it near the service of the found objects, the finder thus proves that it does not seek to appropriate the property of others.

​Le service des objets trouvés receives plenty of: ID's, keys, glasses, umbrellas, suitcases, wallets, cell phones, notebook, laptops, jewellery, musical instruments, clothes, books, toys, camera's etc. But they also been the home to some extraordinary and unusual objects like: a prosthetic leg, a human skull, medal of honour, wedding dress, burial urn, living lobster etc.

Le service des objets trouvés will demand a fee in case an object is retrieved. The amount depending on the value of the object. Pieces with a value below €762,- need to pay a fee of €11,- This fixed fee is increased by 3% of the value of the object when it is greater than € 762. In the case of a retrieved lost object, the piece gained a narrative (hence increasing immaterial value) and since the pieces that where bought to be lost would be under €10,- this would theoretically also increase the financial value.

Bijoux Bijoue Bijeux, intervention in public space / le service des objets trouvés, Paris (FR)

© 2020 by Karin Bartels

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