The Mound of Vendôme (2012) is a project exploring a “radical reconstruction” of a heap of dirt built by the Commune de Paris in 1871 in front of the Vendôme Column. Before they toppled the column to the ground, the Communards built the mound to cushion the street and surrounding buildings from the demolition’s impact. The Vendôme Column was rebuilt in 1873, and perhaps the mound will be rebuilt in 2013. The project to reconstruct the mound consists of an image of a physical proposal and a petition to the Department of Heritage and Architecture for the City of Paris . The petition further explains the purpose of the mound and the reasons why the Commune destroyed the column.
The term radical reconstruction draws from the idea of radical history — generally, the history of politically radical social movements. A radical reconstruction relates to this tradition but further suggests the reawakening of radical historical thought through acts of architectural or urban reconstruction.
The Mound of Vendôme project also positions radical reconstruction more specifically within traditions of 1970s land-art and mail-art. The contemporary collage image was made along with the petition, which explains the project more fully and its ambitions. The historical images that follow the collage image provide more contextual background on the situation of the Vendome Column, the mound, and the Paris Commune.