Les désœuvré.e.s: Panel intervention

Intervention as part of CHANTIER

A project by Jean-François Prost with collaborators, presented by Skol


May 12nd – July 27th, 2024

Project description

A text for the CHANTIER panel offers a bold perspective, tinged with contemplation and provocation. It encourages considering a radical idea: the voluntary cessation of work, production, and consumption. This proposition prompts deep introspection on the repercussions of such an initiative, highlighting its formidable and liberating repercussions. Despite this, a glimmer of hope emerges, suggesting the unsuspected benefits of such upheaval. At the heart of this audacity lies an invitation to transcend our limits, to explore new horizons, and to embrace the unknown with courage and clarity. The sentence resonates with the idea of a site (at 6919 Marconi Street), deliberately left raw and free from permanent construction, thus diverging from the constant imperative to build. The state of CHANTIER is perceived as a moment of reflection and experimentation, without a predetermined end. In this spirit, this site embraces incompleteness, thus distinguishing itself from the standardization and commodification of urban spaces.

Mural painting and typography: Octavio Rüest. For this second participation in the CHANTIER project and to learn more about this artist and his work, please consult: HERE

Staging : Les désœuvré.e.s, Octavio Rüest and Jean-François Prost.



CHANTIER is an artistic, political and social investigation of the conceptualization and creation of a large display device situated on a vacant lot at 6919 Marconi in Montréal. For more than a year, this proposed structure will serve as a support for the realization of a series of collaborative, artistic and civic interventions.

6919 Marconi, starting point of the CHANTIER project, is located in a hybrid urban zone (residential, industrial and commercial) along a train line. For many years now, Prost individually and collectively initiated on this 1 800 ft2 lot different types of occupations, such as workshops, projections, launches and urban camping. Today, many city dwellers are challenged and drawn to this vacant lot as a space-time of stopping, slowing down and spontaneity in an era of acceleration and increased control.

Unlike entertained-animated spaces that are overly programmed and codified, as we know nowadays, the vacant lot stays wide open for imagination (without dictating how we behave, move and travel). According to the theoretician Benjamin Delmotte, this allows “multiple never-ending beginnings.”

For the CHANTIER project, Jean-François Prost will initiate an intervention offering a support on which other individuals can act and contribute to define its character and specificity in transformation. This participation and (co)definition process suggests an eventual negotiation about the land, which is vital for democracy. As the urbanist Jane Jacobs said : “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.”

The proposed actions will explore the theme of the vanished, existing and prospective urban diversity, as well as the vagueness of the place, and the unfinished aspect of the construction site as a vector for co-defining the city.

It is in this spirit that the CHANTIER project is being developed. More news will follow soon about the planned actions.

Discover the program HERE