french artist olivier grossetête explores urban spaces, architectural symbolism, and community participation with in-situ installations called ‘monumental constructions’. the artist installs ‘unusual, ephemeral and useless’ structures across the globe using cardboard as his preferred medium. from towers to floating bridges held aloft by giant helium balloons, the works are built with the help of local communities, who then participate in demolishing them afterwards.

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

architecture en fête, villeneuve-lez-avignon, france (2015)
image by olivier grossetête

each temporary installation begins in the workshop. local inhabitants of all ages contribute to the pre-construction stage, where detailed parts of the structures are made. the project then moves onto the construction site and olivier grossetête and the local community work together to build the monument using only human strength. over his 20 year career, the artist has installed cardboard creations across europe and even further afield in locations such as mexico and australia. 

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

festival de l’oh, champigny, france (2015)
image by mucha

the final part of the process is probably the most enjoyable. ‘the population is invited to assist the demolition of the building. after it has been pulled down, the public is asked to trample and jump all over the boxes. this is an integral part of the project. this symbolic moment is fun,’  explains grossetête on his website.

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

ecole d’architecture, clermont-ferrand, france (2015)
image by olivier grossetête

the artist continues, ‘the aim of the project is as much about sharing the experience of a collective construction as the final work of art. this is a federating project which touches both young and old and enables people to meet and build joyfully together.’

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

castrum festival, yverdon-les-bains, switzerland (2017)
image by yverdon

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

kultur festival, stockholm, sweden (2016)

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

festival guagalajara, mexico (2016)
image by olivier grossetête

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

les folies monstres et merveilles, maubeuge, france (2018)
image by olivier grossetête

floating bridges and other temporary cardboard structures by artist olivier grossetête

ephemeral city festival, sydney, australia (2016)
image by jamie williams

project info:

artist: olivier grossetête