Suite Vénitienne / Please Follow Me


By Sophie Calle and Please follow me by Jean Baudrillard.

“At the end of January 1980, on the streets of Paris, I followed a man whom I lost sight of a few minutes later in the crowd. That very evening, quite by chance, he was introduced to me at an opening. During the course of our conversation, he told me he was planning an imminent trip to Venice. I decided to follow him.”

This book is an exercise in surveillance—of oneself and of others—as artist Sophie Calle wanders the streets of Venice in pursuit of the mysterious stranger Henri B. In annotated photographic entries, Calle notates the unfolding of the chase and the development of her own emotional attachment to her human prize. At times she intentionally loses herself, lies to acquaintances and follows unhelpful, arbitrary routes for unknown reasons. Finding this enigmatic man—we soon realise—is far from the point.

This edition, Calle’s first artist’s book, includes an accompanying essay by sociologist Jean Baudrillard on the relationship between following and obsession, ownership and escape.

Publication Date: 1988
Publisher: Bay Press

Details: Softcover. 87 pp.

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