The street artist Thoma Vuille, known as “Monsieur Chat” (Mister Cat) in France, has won his trial against the RATP, the French transport network on Wednesday.
He had been dragged to court because of his artworks tagged on walls in the subway station Châtelet.
The RATP claimed for 1800 euros because of the drawings they consider as degradation. Yet, the artist has explained he always tags in Paris when he knows that the place is under repair. In this special case, the walls of the station are waiting to be covered by tiles. The trial has been cancelled because of a lack of relevance in the expenses, as Thoma Vuille’s lawyer, Agnès Tricoire, has noticed.
Monsieur Chat is famous for drawing big yellow smiling cats, sometimes compared to the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland, like a signature. For him, drawing on public space is a way “to make passers smile, to enlighten the city by putting some color when it’s too grey, and not to degrade.”
To celebrate this victory, Thoma Vuille has decided to tag a new fresco in the thirteenth district of Paris. He wants to make people think about the aim of street art, which is, in his opinion, to proclaim freedom and justice in the middle of art.
Charlotte Pont, IEJ 3F