Gold Coast

A permanent commission for Un été au Havre
Terre-Plein de la Jetée, Le Havre
opened 22/06/2021

Gold Coast is a rock formation among the breakwaters next to the reconctructed center of Le Havre. These rocks are curious hybrids between precious stones and golden meteorites. Their shiny surfaces react with the surrounding atmosphere; reflecting sunlight in the middle of the day, glowing intensely at sunset and glistening in moonlight. The work is integrated into the maritime landscape and at the same time its supernatural character contrasts with the port context of energy storage in the background. What was once an ordinary granite rock, a priori of no great material value, is transformed into an extraordinary mineral which reflects light like the surface of water.

Breakwaters are the dividing line between the forces of the sea and the urban environment. The natural stones have been adorned using a technique used in sanctuaries and architectural heritages. Through the aesthetic quality of this surface, the craggy rocks become sculpture, while retaining their primary function of protecting the coastline.

But beyond the environmental and geological context, the work evokes by its title and its appearance the economic dimension of the world port trade as well as the aspirations of the city of Le Havre. Unalterable and incorruptible, synonymous with eternity, gold is a safe bet when the economy is volatile. These giant gold nuggets create an illusion of inexhaustible, incredible wealth. The Côte-d'Or ironically depicts the coastline of the city as a new El Dorado.

Curator: Jean Blaise