All the copyrights of these graffiti are owned by their authors.
“M. Chat” (Mr Cat) is a yellow grinning cat (an Alice in wonderland Cheshire cat grin). I first met him in Rennes, and was very surprised to see him again in Nantes, then elsewhere.
Here is the list of my sightings, I’ll add photos when I have them:
- Rennes—Place du Colombier (erased)
- Rennes—Railway station
- Nantes—Cours des 50 Otages (erased, to be confirmed)
- Paris—Rue de Rennes: at the crossing of rue de Rennes with boulevard Raspail, behind a grate, there was a M. Chat. But the mice got their revenge…
- Paris—Montparnasse railway station “Control tower”: near misses, full shot available as desktop wallpaper. Another full shot. (erased)
- Paris—Montparnasse railway station work site: end of quay fence, small inside fence (one blurred and one sharp photo), and a series of details of both graffitis available as desktop wallpaper (demolished)
- Paris—Subway line 1 tunnel between Châtelet and Hôtel de Ville
- Paris—Subway line 1 tunnel between Hôtel de Ville and Saint Paul
- Paris—Gare du Nord railway station
- Paris—At the corner of quai de Valmy and Alexandre Parodi street, along Saint Martin canal
“M. Chat” also appeared on TV during the mai 1st, 2002 demonstrations in Paris (placard) and during the February 2003 demonstrations (“Make cats, not war” placards).
Spotted by readers
Here are more locations suggested by readers:
- Venezuela—A correspondent has noticed the appearance of M. Chat on South American walls
- From Frédéric Boudard: a good dozen Cats in Nantes, and also one in la Rochelle, in Orléans, on the Ré island.
- From Vahe Ender: a Cat in Geneva, Switzerland, on a wall that lines a train track.
- From Maureen: in Paris, one Cat Place Dauphine (sitting with your back to Seine, look high up again and you’ll see him grinning down) an two in Pompidou (for the first, from Restaurant Six, on a building across from the restaurant side that does not look over the outdoor seating, for the second, exiting the museum into the pavillon, high up on a building on the left-hand side). Photos are available on her site (at the bottom of the page).
- From Véronique Maiella: in Paris, one Cat on the quai des Orfèvres, one on the quai de l’Horloge, one at the École des Beaux-Arts, and one at Austerlitz railway station.
- From Maxime Gabarini, eleven locations in Paris with photos.
- From Aurélie Sobréro: rumours say that “M. Chat” was born in Orléans, she has indeed collected lots of photos taken in Orléans.
- From T. & D. Holkham: one Cat in Norwich in the U.K.
Another visitor says there are several, included in a photo gallery.
- From Mavis: three M. Chat in Norwich, one with wings and the words “Try to catch me…”, another with a swimming ring along the river, the last framed in a TV screen with the words “My cat is watching you”.
- From Zorglub: photos of parisian Cats.
- Mike Gindonis has photos of M. Chat in Geneva and a very interesting M. Chat painted on a tree in Paris.
- Mélusine has spotted two cats in Paris:
one square Jules Joffrin (18th district town hall), with a funny detail, this one has wings and is on a wall next to an undertaker shop!!!
one on the aerial subway archways on line 2 between the Barbès and la Chapelle stations.
- Carole has spotted M. Chat in Vitry sur Seine
- A visitor saw him in Sarajevo
- Reidloss has a few M. Chat (including M. Chat in a train) and one Helmet boy photo on his “peinture de rue” gallery.
- Ada saw M. Chat in Paris, in a subway (métro) tunnel, on line 4, in the Châtelet-Cité direction.
- L’hawaiien saw M. Chat in Nantes and sent me photos: on the external elevator of the scaffolding surrounding the Saint Nicolas church, next to the place Royale.
- Anna saw M. Chat on a blockhaus on the beach in Guidel, Brittany.
- Several readers have seen three M. Chat on the chimneys around Pompidou center in Paris, and one in the library of the center (it was probably put there during the Chris Marker event described below).
- Bmw has seen M. Chat in Switzerland, in Neuchâtel, in Colombier along the freeway, and in Boudry. He has also seen it in Zurich during The street parade (about a hundred signs distributed to the participants).
- Ben has photographed M. Chat on a train in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and has also seen it in Manhattan, New York, U.S.A., and maybe in Vienna, Austria.
- Igor met M. Chat in Bourges.
- Tigoune got a glimpse of M. Chat from the train while exiting the Tours station, going towards Nantes, on a building.
- A visitor has also noticed M. Chat on the Ré island, on a roundabout.
- A visitor remembers seeing M. Chat in a helicopter close to the Orléans media library.
- A visitor has seen M. Chat in Québec, rue St. Jean le baptiste.
- A visitor from the United States has seen M. Chat in New York in the Chelsea area: between 26th street and 7th avenue, and between 26 and 27th streets, close to 6th avenue.
- M. Chat has also been to Senegal and China.
- Tuz mentions that M. Chat has been seen in many places in Huế, the old imperial capital of Vietnam.
- Tim has a photo of another M. Chat in Sarajevo
- Olivier saw M. Chat in São Paulo, Brazil, as mentioned in this article.
I love the grin and the riddle of chasing “M. Chat”, the author is Thoma Vuille.
A documentary filmmaker I like a lot, Chris Marker, has made a film about M. Chat. It was aired on French TV on December 4, ’04, and was released on DVD. The film was also shown at the Pompidou Center in Paris, and the plaza hosted a big M. Chat. I’ve saved a screenshot of the piazza webcam, it has since been deleted.
A graffiti painted in 2000 by theAerosoul group on the boulevard du Colombier walls in Rennes. This graffiti was painted with the authorization of the wall owner, is composed of several panels following each other on about a hundred meters.
It is full of movement, going from a cyber-cow to science-fiction images, and also featuring vegetation that seems to grow from the sidewalk. In one panel, a character seems to want to escape the wall. You can also see the signature of the Aerosoul group.
A black cat for a restaurant sign.
A graffiti on a cycling lane.
This boy with a helmet and his freckles are a recurrent sight in Rennes, sometimes on forbidden walls, sometimes as shop decoration, like the baker on place du Colombier (check it when the shop is closed). Here is another monochrome version.
Guy Fawkes face on a staircase.
The abandoned and blind walls of the harbour are the only art gallery I visit regularly in Brest.
Texts and a cartoon character in a bunker on the coast.
Stenciled creepy-crawlies on a bunker door.