Les Fabriques du coeur et leur usage
Images are central to this book and its companion exhibition, be they in the guise of guides, headers, legends and citations which, together with short stories, inspire other images in the reader’s mind. Like the patchwork composition of illustrations on the cover, the intention of its creator, Laurent Busine, ressembles a compendium, an arrangement, a bouquet of images and words, and because he founded a museum there, we could say that Grand-Hornu lies at its heart. Through its architecture which translates a social and industrial utopia into a place to live and work, this former 19th century colliery is effectively an imaginary place: like the salt works at Arc-et-Senans designed by the visionary architect Claude Nicolas Ledoux, it is a sort of “philosophy-image”1, the “unified vision” of our notion of a “manufactory”, its fable.
Denis Gielen, extract from the Preface
1 « Claude Nicolas Ledoux. L’image philosophie », in : Alberto Manguel, Le Livre d’images, 2011.