They all went there very early each morning and we only saw them coming back late each night. The factory, this space and time where every day legions of fathers, brothers, neighbours, friends disappeared... and as children we listened out for their footsteps on the basement stairs. Right on time for supper. The factory, a totally abstract universe for a child who needed a great deal of imagination to get an idea of it. A dark silhouette outside the city, roaring, coughing up its grey smoke to which access was strictly forbidden. It was not until a few years later that many of these grown-up children went through the gates to the monster which had finally fallen silent. The irresistible need to know and understand where this black dirt under the nails of a father, brother, neighbour or friend actually came from. I particularly like these abandoned factories. Their smells, the colours, the light and the incredible machinery that can be discovered remind me that they remain one of the only places where reality still surpasses the rather fertile imagination of the child I have remained.