The Animal Factory

Faber art notebooks, no.1



ISBN: 9782330166090 Category:


Art faber is an umbrella term for works of art – whether pictorial, literary, photographic, musical or cinematographic – whose main or secondary themes are work, business and the world of economics. The word faber is rooted in the foundations of the economy. It is the Latin word for “smith” and the etymological root of Romance language of “making” and “manufacturing”, as well as the essence of Homo faber. Homo faber or “man the maker” is the toolmaker, the manufacturer of machines and consumer products, the main protagonist of secondary industries, but also of the tertiary, service sector. Homo faber is also a producer of life, especially in terms of cultivation and animal husbandry – the farmer, the breeder, the tamer, the transformer, adapting the natural world to our needs: harnessing animals’ strength for work, creating consumer products, such as milk and meat; and processing wool and hide for artisanal ends. For several decades now, however, this manufacture of life forms has raised several ethical and moral questions about animal well-being, food strategies, sustainable development, ecology, short-and-long term disaster management, and intensive breeding and its impact on the environment and consumers. This first issue of the Cahiers de l’Art faber tackles the field of photography through the “Bestiaux” portrait series begun by the artist Yann Arthus-Bertrand thirty years ago. In the series, the artist looks at the privileged relationship between breeder and livestock, inviting us to reflect upon the economic vocation of their animals, and on the system in which animals are produced, used and consumed. As wells as a previously unpublished interview with the photographer by Catherine Briat, the issue features articles from the historian Éric Baratay on domestication, the economist Jean-Marc Dupuy on the history of animal production in France, and the legal expert Jean-Pierre Marguénaud on the issue of animal rights, as well as a presentation of the results of a Havas-BETC survey into the contemporary relationship between humans and animals by Olivier Vigneaux, the chair of BETC advertising agency’s Digital Studio. With this first Cahier, the Art Faber collective inaugurates a series of articles exploring major societal themes today in an attempt to create a cross-fertilization of two disciplines that are oft considered unrelated: contemporary art and economics, to encourage debate, expand scope for fresh interpretations, and encourage dialogue between the two fields.

Additional information

Weight 692 g
Dimensions 21.6 x 31.6 cm
Publisher name Actes Sud
Publication date 25 March 2024
Number of pages
Format Paperback / softback
Contributors Text by Jerome Duval-Hamel, Laurent Pfister, Yann Arthus-Bertrand, and Marine Bry
Dimensions 21.6 x 31.6 cm
Weight 692 g


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Contributors: Lourdes Arizpe, Éric Baratay, Maeva Bac, Catherine Briat, Jean-Marc Dupuy, Jean-Pierre Marguénaud, Olivier Vigneaux and the students of École polytechnique fédérale in Lausanne and Université Paris-Panthéon-Assas. Cahiers de l'Art faber are part of the "Actes Sud/Art faber" collection, co-edited by Actes Sud and Lab. Arts & Entreprises de EDMP/Université Paris-Panthéon-Assas. This work has been published thanks to the support of the University Chair, Professor Stéphane Braconnier.