Louis Le Kim

Louis Le Kim has always drawn fantastical spaces using techniques of perspective and light application. He has produced numerous graphite drawings depicting empty and abandoned spaces, often associated with an aesthetic close to brutalist architecture.


In 2009, Louis Le Kim discovered and explored various types of underground tunnels in Paris (electric distribution, air conditioning, urban heating, telecom, railways, sewers, quarries, bomb shelters, etc.), eventually spending a year living in a 14,000m² power plant from 1929 located within the city. Over time, he amassed a collection of keys granting access to various underground and other spaces.


Additionally, he spent hours wandering on Google Earth, noting landmarks that pointed to sensitive or abandoned industrial sites, military zones, mining areas, ghost towns, archaeological sites, and other geological peculiarities.


In 2012, he began exploring locations outside of Paris, then outside of France, recording numerous industrial sites in Europe, particularly in the petrochemical, mining, steel, and electrical sectors. He continues to revisit some of these sites until he knows them by heart.


In 2015, he embarked on his first significant journey to explore the Semipalatinsk Test Site, a radioactive area where over 456 nuclear tests were conducted during the Soviet era. This journey also included visits to decommissioned space launch sites, abandoned satellite surveillance military sites, collapsed cruise missile silos, thermal power plants (including the world's tallest chimney at 410m), aluminum production sites, coal and uranium mines, and certain desert areas with unique geological formations.


His desire for travel did not stop there. After several returns to Kazakhstan, he visited other countries, such as Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and the South Caucasus (Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh), as well as Ukraine, Turkey, Jordan, Mauritania, Sudan, and Iraq, where he made multiple visits.


Using these collected items, such as photographs, videos, and objects, he creates assemblages, drawings, and oil paintings on canvas, aiming to produce works that contribute to the context of spatial research.