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  • The MHEU | The ragpicker's badge
    the various kinds of rags they collected loques pattes drilles chiffes The ragpicker was later known as the biffin after the biffe or iron hook used for raking through the refuse These badges were initially distributed to former convicts and prisoners in exchange for information which did nothing to improve the reputation of the profession then to old men and cripples and finally to anyone who requested them even children Chiiiiiiiiffonnier The ragpicker s badge A guild A philosopher The rag and bone man s round Bad times for the rag and bone men The fortifs and the zone The ragpickers territory Les Chiffonniers d Emmaüs Jopie Huisman ragpicker painter Modern times Le petit chiffonnier appuyé contre une borne The young ragpicker leaning on a bollard Le petit chiffonnier The young ragpicker a photo taken in front of the photographer s studio on the Île de la Cité in Paris in 1851 is particularly representative of Charles Nègre s talent for the genre scene a rigorous formal triangular composition and a strong depth of shot make this a very classical photo However the profile view which emphasizes the basket and the casual posture of the subject as well as his

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/ragpicker-badge.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | The ragpicker, a philosopher
    like nods a rag picker comes reeling Bumping on walls like poets without feeling And scorning cops now vassals of his state Begins on glorious subjects to dilate Takes royal oaths dictates his laws sublime Exalts the injured and chastises crime And spreading his own dais on the sky Is dazzled by his virtues starred on high Yes these folk badgered by domestic care Ground down by toil decrepitude despair Buckled beneath the foul load that each carries The motley vomit of enormous Paris Come home vat scented trailing clouds of glory Followed by veteran comrades battle hoary Whose whiskers stream like banners as each marches Flags torches flowers and steep triumphal arches Rise up for them in magic hues and burn Since through this dazzling orgy they return While drums and clarions daze the sun above With glory to a nation drunk with love Thus Wine through giddy human life is rolled Like Pactolus a stream of burning gold Through man s own throat his exploits it will sing And reign by gifts as best befits a king To lull their laziness and drown their rancour For storm tossed wrecks a temporary anchor God in remorse made sleep Man added Wine Child of the Sun immortal and divine Charles Baudelaire Les Fleurs du Mal Translated by Roy Campbell Poems of Baudelaire New York Pantheon Books 1952 Chiiiiiiiiffonnier The ragpicker s badge A guild A philosopher The rag and bone man s round Bad times for the rag and bone men The fortifs and the zone The ragpickers territory Les Chiffonniers d Emmaüs Jopie Huisman ragpicker painter Modern times Le chiffonnier The Ragpicker The Ragpicker 1869 belongs to Manet s naturalistic period It was painted ten years after The Absinthe Drinker 1859 which had earned the artist his first rejection by the Salon and which also depicted an alcoholic ragpicker in a top hat This man wearing a bowler hat and with his white beard has slightly more the look of a philosopher than the first a romantic vision then depicted the ragpicker as a free man working whenever the mood struck It is possible to see in the figure painted in 1869 a form of tribute to Baudelaire Manet s drunken poet philosopher friend who had died two years earlier Be that as it may the style is still influenced by Velázquez here in particular by Menippus which the French ragpicker resembles very closely Manet adored Velázquez s painting it is true but Napoleon III had also just married a beautiful Spanish woman Spain was in fashion and the Frenchman was hungry for success and recognition Yet the naturalism of his painting once again shocked the public and of course filled Emile Zola with enthusiasm He had championed Manet at the 1866 Salon had become his friend and had his portrait painted by him in 1868 Edouard Manet Edouard Manet s father Auguste Manet was a senior civil servant at the Ministry of Justice His mother née Fournier was

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/philosopher.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | Jopie Huisman, ragpicker-painter
    ragpicker artist Honor to the ragpicker I have said it this unspeakable word Will I be forgiven Can you see this man who with the aid of his hook collects what he can find in the mire and throws it into his sack Do not turn away we need no pride no false delicacy This humble rag is the raw material that will go on to adorn our libraries and the precious treasures of the human mind This ragpicker comes before Montesquieu Buffon and Rousseau Without his hook my book would not exist for you dear reader which might not be a very bad thing I grant you But you would have no books you owe this material that goes into making paper whose source seems so lowly to him All these rags turned into paste this is what will be used to conserve the flames of eloquence the sublime thoughts the generous features of the virtues the most memorable acts of patriotism All these volatile ideas are going to be fixed as quickly as they are conceived All these images drawn in the intellect will be fastened printed and glued and in spite of nature which causes the man

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/jopie-huisman.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | The waste generated by our consumer society
    Uncle these two worlds no longer cohabit A stockade a shaky frontier separates the two neighborhoods wealth and poverty pretension and modesty stress and an easy going life egoism and sociability etc The Arpels a well off bourgeois couple come down to use their luxurious villa with its futuristic architecture in the new neighborhood with their son Gérard for the first time Gérard leads a dull life between an absent father and an obsessively house proud mother Gérard associates the sound of the vacuum cleaner with his mother s presence The only times that matter to him are when he is riding around his uncle s Mr Hulot old neighborhood on the back of his uncle s Solex The film revolves around this contrast and Tati wields his camera without pulling his punches lambasting snobbery conformism and dehumanizing modernism the clinical laboratory like kitchen the garden with its excruciating design the aggressive electronic shutters or the idiotic gargoyle like fish fountain are all pretexts for inventive and sometimes repetitive gags No one communicates in this house where everything communicates as Mme Arpel coos A visionary Tati poses very contemporary questions with humor and insistence on architecture and town planning local services social interaction between classes parent child relations the place of cars in our cities But Mon Oncle is above all a great comic film Jacques Tati in his original and poetic style creates a new rhythm for his scenes and gags and develops a popular ambitious and demanding cinema The film ends on an optimistic note with father and son hand in hand united in a mischievous complicity that they will have to learn to sustain Jacques Tati Jacques Tatischeff was born in the outskirts of Paris on October 9 1907 Destined to follow in the footsteps of his father a picture framer he abandoned his studies to become a mime artist He performed his pantomime parodies of sports on stage and then in short films In 1947 he made L école des facteurs School for Postmen a promising outline of his first feature length film which came out the same year Jour de Fête The Big Day This first work was greeted with critical and public success Proudly claiming descent from the great American burlesque comedians headed by Chaplin and Keaton Tati established his own offbeat style a silent and very resonant cinema a great comic filmmaker was born In 1953 Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot Monsieur Hulot s Holiday was an international triumph especially in the United States This was the first appearance on screen of the emblematic character to which the filmmaker now lent his own tall silhouette Mon Oncle My Uncle came out in 1958 and received the highest accolades the Special Jury Prize at Cannes and the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in Hollywood Tati attached to his independence and creative freedom then turned down the most enticing propositions so we never got Monsieur Hulot goes skiing or Monsieur Hulot in New York in

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/modern-times.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | Eugène Atget and the "zone"
    fille Que je trime ainsi jusqu au jour Où cette enfant ma seule richesse Courageuse et forte à son tour Sera mon bâton de vieillesse Le chiffonnier reçut un jour une lettre C était sa fille qui lui disait ceci Pardonne moi et daigne me permettre De t expliquer ma fuite du logis J ai un amant plusieurs fois millionnaire J ai domestiques voiture diamants Si vous voulez dès demain ne rien faire Maman et toi vous aurez de l argent De l argent On les vieux chiffons Répondit l père plein de rage Tu peux garder tous tes millions Tes valets tes équipages T as vendu ta beauté ton cœur Désormais tu n es plus ma fille Mais sache que souvent l honneur Se cache sous une guenille A French song by Adolphe Bérard Chiiiiiiiiffonnier The ragpicker s badge A guild A philosopher The rag and bone man s round Bad times for the rag and bone men The fortifs and the zone The ragpickers territory Les Chiffonniers d Emmaüs Jopie Huisman ragpicker painter Modern times List of all works 01 Porte d Asnières Cité Valmy ragpickers Eugène Atget Eugène Atget Musée Carnavalet Roger Viollet 02 Porte d Asnières Cité Valmy ragpickers Eugène Atget Eugène Atget Musée Carnavalet Roger Viollet 03 A ragpicker morningtime in Paris Avenue des Gobelins Eugène Atget Eugène Atget BnF 04 Poterne des peupliers zone dwellers Paris 13th arrondissement Eugène Atget Eugène Atget BnF 05 Porte d Asnières cité Trébert ragpickers Eugène Atget Eugène Atget BnF 06 Mouffetard district ragpicker Eugène Atget Musée Carnavalet Roger Viollet Eugène Atget Eugène Atget was born in 1857 on the outskirts of Bordeaux to a family of coachbuilders He was orphaned at the age of five and was raised by his grandparents He wanted to work in the theatre

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/fortifs-and-zone.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | The rag-and-bone man's round
    manager or concierge It was chance the need to eat and potential rich pickings that drove him to this career He then made this reasoning based on statistics every day in Paris at least three hundred thousand cigars are smoked there must therefore be somewhere especially under the pavement tables of boulevard cafés three hundred thousand cigar ends The prospects were good he glimpsed a large scale operation took on partners and there you have yet another manufacturer a manufacturer of forbidden tobacco Extract from Les petites industries by Edmond Texier in Paris Guide par les principaux écrivains et artistes de la France 1863 Chiiiiiiiiffonnier The ragpicker s badge A guild A philosopher The rag and bone man s round Bad times for the rag and bone men The fortifs and the zone The ragpickers territory Les Chiffonniers d Emmaüs Jopie Huisman ragpicker painter Modern times Passage du Puits Bertin Clichy The Passage du Puits Bertin in Clichy is beside a gasworks and its seven gasholders were immortalized by Georges Seurat in 1883 by Van Gogh in 1887 and by Paul Signac in 1886 In this drawing dated 1886 you see standing on either side of a house two of the factory s gas tanks and a third one half hidden by the house The work no doubt done from a photograph therefore shows a slightly off centre viewpoint to the right in relation to the painting Les Gazomètres à Clichy Gasometers at Clichy painted the same year Here it was no longer a matter of the color theory which influenced Seurat in the development of pointillism Signac applied the approach to drawing and the points black lead and ink create an accumulation of contrasts of gray just like on a photographic image Paul Signac This son of well to

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/ragpickers-round.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | Les Chiffonniers d'Emmaüs (the ragpickers of Emmaus)
    Claudia Cardinale Robert Hirsch Bernie Bonvoisin and Philippe Leroy Beaulieu The winter of 1954 15 degrees Abbé Pierre a former deputy former Resistance fighter and founder of the Chiffonniers Bâtisseurs d Emmaüs Denis Amar as the film s subheading indicates wants us to share in the hard struggle wants to show us the limitless tenacity of this secular abbot to have his project of building emergency homes for the most destitute in the middle of a terrible winter adopted by the French Senate Tenacity was what he needed in spades in the face of politicians with no interest in the people safe in the warmth of their snug offices smoking cigars thinking only of giving absolute priority to the means of production A very contemporary struggle indeed And persistent Abbé Pierre certainly was but he was also highly intelligent and as a brilliant forerunner to charity business he knew how to use the levers of the media of the time radio and film news Denis Amar based his discourse on endless transitions between one world and the other from those who have everything to those who have nothing from those who allow themselves the luxury of not seeing to those who have lost any shred of hope The film carries us into anger indignation and into rejection of an illegal law and it achieves its end just as the Abbott does for the politicians were forced to give in Does that mean everything was put right The scene showing the erecting of tents the distribution of meals to the starving the death from cold of a woman and of a baby plunge us into contemporary reality and what has become a recurrent theme in today s media And that is of course the main message of the film Denis Amar

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/chiffonniers-emmaus.htm (2016-04-28)
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  • The MHEU | A crisis for the ragpickers
    bylaw I employed six men and a certain number of women I used to buy on average 500 francs worth of waste per day since then I have been buying only 140 or 150 francs worth instead of six men I employ only three and out of ten or twelve women I have had to dismiss half Now these men and women who cannot work with me anymore cannot find work with my fellow rag merchants either They are on the streets of Paris unable to find work It is obvious that these women can hardly go and become seamstresses or make lingerie This is the crisis we are suffering from Extract from the declaration of M Potin master ragpicker to the Committee of 44 a parliamentary commission on workers situations cited by Joseph Barberet in Le travail en France monographies professionnelles Master ragpickers joined forces with the more lowly pickers to defend their interests before the authorities This resulted in an arrangement whereby a ragpicker could take part in the rounds of the garbage trucks However the gradual implementation of Eugène Poubelle s 1883 bylaw marked the end of the golden age for ragpickers Chiiiiiiiiffonnier The ragpicker s badge A guild A philosopher The rag and bone man s round Bad times for the rag and bone men The fortifs and the zone The ragpickers territory Les Chiffonniers d Emmaüs Jopie Huisman ragpicker painter Modern times Chiffonniers Paul Geniaux Paul Géniaux originally from Rennes moved to Paris with his elder brother Charles when very young His brother who is better known seems to have cast a shadow over the biography of his younger sibling so details of Charle s life remain hazy Both were photographers Paul s work in Paris is documented until the 1930s He is known for

    Original URL path: http://www.mheu.org/en/ragpickers/ragpickers-crisis.htm (2016-04-28)
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