Be happy and everything is possible,
Don’t trust the system that's very important,
Don’t go to much to school.
Observation the nature well and that what's around you.
Respect yourself and everything will be good.
I had a big chance to grow up living in a different way than other kids.
My mother was a bit crazy, an artist and quite revolutionary.
My dad was a real artist, he made a lot of different things from everything, worked with metal and stone, painted and made sculptures.
He died when I was very young, so after he died I lived with my mother and brothers alone or we lived for example in a community. My mother really liked to make a ‘strange’ lifestyle. I grew up living in a yurt. I also lived in a tipi for one year and a half, this to try to live as isolated from the system as possible in full nature.
I lived in trucks and we fixed old houses and transformed them totally into something crazy. I lived in a big squat in Paris, a very big social centre.
There was always something going on. I grew up between artists, people who made sculptures. (the creatives)
When I was ten years old. I lived for the first time ‘alone’, this was actually with a group of young people. We found a nice spot close to the river and we built a camp there.
Together we collected mushrooms and other things from nature to eat.
Our parents came to help sometimes and brought some food and checked if everything was going well. We lived here in total autonomy. We stayed all summer in our camp and after we returned to our families. My parents gave my brother and me the opportunity to live like this and make our own decisions.
I think this is really important to kids, when you are young you learn more and my mother gave us the basic skills to survive in life.
My mother also homeschooled us. I’ve been to a ‘normal’ school for only 3 years.
I went there because it was obligatory, but I really hated it. After my mother studied to be a teacher. She made this decision because she understood how school can manipulate kids and she didn’t want to cooperate in this. She tried to give a new concept to the education system and I think she really did a good job, I feel really satisfied with my education. We had all of our lessons at home and every now and then we had to make some official exams. Next to the normal schoolwork she also taught us how to grow plants, live with the things that come from the nature etc.
I think this, in the end, was the most important thing to learn for me.
Within our family, my mother always asked us what we wanted to do, we made all the decisions together. So one day my mother asked my brother and I, what do you want to do? Continue living in the truck, squat or do you want to try to live in a normal house?
My brother and I wanted to see what it would be like to live in a normal house and so we rented a place. Pretty soon after we already started to see what the consequence of this was... We didn’t feel free at all, we had to take care of everything and pay a lot for the house and in the end it’s not even ‘your’ house.
We directly understood this was not ‘the good life’ for us.
It was sad for our mother as she had to work a lot more for this living arrangement.
When I was a bit older my mother decided to start traveling again.
At this time I was old enough to really live by myself and decided to search for a suitable place to build something.
For many years I lived in Spain as it seemed more easy there, but due to the situation of the government I decided to move back to France. I believe we are all responsible to make something better for the future generations.
For the past five years I have been living in Terre Blanque. The first 2 years I lived in a house I built myself, which was the prototype for the house where I live now. It is based now a caravan and a camper that the people from Terre Blanque gave me and the rest is made out of recycled materials. I try to build as ecological as possible. I collect my materials from the waste of ‘the system’. For instance: I recycle old doors, windows, wood and isolation from a factory nearby. About 80 percent of my house is made of recycled materials! That’s why I call the house “the doors”. If I would like to I could build a castle from all the things I find in the trash. But if we want to keep our land, I have to set some personal limits.
Terre Blanque is like a little village. We are a group of people living together but at the same time alone. Everybody has his own house and his own life. Sometimes we meet to discuss the important things of the terrain and to keep each other up to date. There are not many places like this in France, so it's important that we keep good communication together to maintain the good way.
We are lucky because we don’t really have problems with the village or government.
This because we are all artists. In the beginning, the people of the village were a bit afraid of us, but bit by bit they started to see what we were doing here.
For example, we made some sculptures and a book exchange for the village. The book exchange is a sort of closet in the street where people can take out a book they like and if they have old books they don’t want, they can leave them there for others.
Also for big cities we have created things. In Marseille there is a big Giraffe that was made in Terre Blanche. The moment the council in Marseille said they wanted to get rid of it, the people made some manifestation to keep the Giraffe. For them it’s significant for Marseille. There are a lot of examples to name and with these little things we can give something to the community and maybe we influence people to start to think different about things. I think people get influenced by everything that they will see and hear.
If you see something that impresses you, it will be ‘saved’ in a part of your brain and maybe one day this will let the people see that they can dream and that they can also realize their dreams. Everything is possible.
Here on Terre Blanche I live alone in my house, I don’t have any pets, this because in my opinion my neighbors already have enough animals and next to that, I love to travel too much. I like to move, to travel with friends or alone, with a van or a backpack. For every voyage there is a good way to travel. But the most easy way to travel is with the truck when you have your home with you.
In the future I would love to have some horses. They are good for traveling, it goes slow, but you don’t need diesel, so it’s good for nature. They can help you with your work and around your house, a horse is incredible in my opinion. It’s your friend, your tool, your car, everything.
i think it’s important to have one place to be able to come back to.
I prefer to live travelling but i need one place to put my things.
If i want to be autonome i need to do things, make money, make clothes and art.
For this i need a lot of tools and i need a lot of space. I prefer to travel with less material then that you see in my house. I have a lot of time so when i have a space of my ovvn, my sewing-machine and inspiration i have all that i need. I like to make original clothes, something you don’t see normally. I like the mongolian style for example, this i mix with flamenco and gypsy.
For me the most important is that the clothes are practical, that they're strong clothes.
Besides clothes i can make a sofa and many other things aswell. I work with leather,
this i learned from my mother. She is a shoe maker, I learned to sew by helping my mother to make shoes. After that i made clothes with leather and then i made a yurt and tipis. For this i started to use the sewing-machine. By trying and observating i learned, i've never been to school for sewing, i'm autodidact. So that’s how i gather some money.
The food we partly grow ourselfs here on the terrain. Besides we have some good friends who grow biological food and we help them a few times a week for a few hours and they give us food in return. I think that we have the best quality of food in comparising with the supermarket. I have a good standerd of life, because i spend my time the way i want to.
It’s not that hard to live like this if you understand nature. Nature gives you everything that you need. If you plant the right trees now, then in 20 years, you just can pick the fruits.
"If i ever thought about stopping this lifestyle? no, seriously, no!"
It can be difficult to live in an normal house again, but i can do it if i really need to.
I can addept really easy. But i hope that if i need to live in a normal house, it's not going for long time, because i really don’t want to.