Trahir la place – Exposing the Plaza


Stéphane Montavon, Gilles Lepore, Antoine Chessex


Exposing the Plaza is a sonant installation broadcasting in quadraphony  recordings made on the 9th of March 2011 on the Tahrir Square during the Egyptian revolution. Back then, the square/ roundabout is occupied by the protesters since January the 25th. They were protesting for democracy and the end of the police State.

During the day, the plaza is taken over by reactionaries calling for their departure in order to allow vehicular traffic and business to go back to normal. The populace is led away by Baltagiyas, the cronies of the regime that was crumbling. The army allows it, as in previous days, when it witnessed attacks and murders occurring at the margins of the protests without reacting.

That night, the army takes control of the circle, evacuates destroyed tents, and keeps witnesses at a distance, barring anyone from taking photos.

As soon as it is emptied of its core and the revolution collapses, the narration dissolves. All that is left are traces of voices adrift in the environs of Tahrir Plaza and, two days later, in Alexandria.

Stéphane Montavon (1977-) is a poet and sound artist. He travels throughout the world to make field recordings of situations, whether everyday ones or crises, then adds sound archives and spatializes the whole thing in order to create quadriphonic pieces of cinema for the ear, in situ performances or texts. His works explore the discrepancy between hearing and vision, question the concept of landscape and chase after the infinitely fleeting object that is the voice. Avec Antoine Chessex (1980-) – a Swiss composer, saxophonist, performer and experimental musician – et Gilles Lepore (1972-)  – a Franco-Italian filmmaker, comic book author and illustrator –, they coproduced the Appeau project, a series of four sound and film pieces, of which Trahir la Place is a part.

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Stéphane Montavon’s website :

Document(s) to download

Fiche pédagogique de l'œuvre
Oeuvre Trahir la place