By David siodos and Romain Lasserre

At first, the ring road is a solution. It aimed to facilitate our daily mobility. But while its function is to connect, doesn't it generate breaks in the territory ? Its creation excises lands. The proximity of the ring road make them poorly valuable. They become waste of the landscaping : the remains of a division that did not fall right. Over time, these areas become waste lands, scattered with abandonned buildings. Their asperity, their wild vegetation and the lack of interest which they inspire, making them favorable for spontaneous appropriation. These are areas of freedom. Neither established rule, nor determined rhythm are found there.
In these waste lands which constitute the surroundings of the ring road, people live from day to day and do not have fixed timetables. They make these locations a trafic island away from tumult and prying eyes. In some way, they are the residents. On the ring road, on the contrary, the drivers respect a rhythm, a timetable. They are simply customers. So, the residents and the customers of the ring road co-exist without seeing each others. They seem to belong to the front and the back of a same loop : two invisible worlds one from the other, but inseparable. The ring road is at the same time, the interface and the border between two worlds and, it is what it makes it fascinating. It is an artificial plan to which initial purpose is to bring closer, and however it separates. As though the man, naturally, tended to isolate himself.
Is this inclination for isolation therefore a fate ? For most of its residents, the ring road is a choice, a loophole, or a combination of circumstances. Some suffer from loneliness, others look for it. Few complain. No one claim for it. In the course of my year of exploration of the surroundings of the ring road, i met auhentic, worthy, touching, funny people… Like this man who lived and paints in a shack he built by hands. It is this first contact which awakened my curiosity for the world of which i thought to know, wrongly. All the disoveries which followed bowled my prejudices.
Even if it was not my purpose leaving on their meeting, i thouht to release temporarily people from their isolation. I didn't know it was them which, by their humanity, set me free from mine.