Soupeur de Tasse
“… His thing was urinals and especially the crusts of bread soaking in the grids.”
« Mort à crédit », 1936.
So called ‘soupeurs’, ‘soup eaters’, men loitering in and fetishising public toilets, had a quite simple and straightforward hobby: they would soak some bread in urine and then eat and savour it. Their at once extreme and nonchalant practices are often described in twentieth-century literature about the dark corners of Paris.
In 2008, Marc Martin’s friend Jean-Pierre, fan of this particular kind of soaky sandwiches, finds out about the imminent demolition of the old market hall of Lyon. Amidst the ruins of these subterraneous urinals, once frequented by thousands of delivery truck drivers each morning, he improvised a solitary performance. Haunted by the location’s sexual vibe, by the age-old yellow-stained tiling on the wall, Jean-Pierre has not faked it. He fully assumed his role and let his urine peacefully soak the bread. – An homage to the literature of a bygone era as to the great taste of a French baguette.
“Soupeur de Tasse”, Marc Martin, 2008. (from “Fenster zum Klo”, Marc Martin, Schwules Museum, 2017)