September 02, 2009

Bernard Roux, La Maison du macon/The mason's house



We find ourselves in troglodyte country. Troglodytes are underground dwellings dugged out and lived in by man. The Saumur area in France boasts the largest concentration of these dwellings in Europe.

Located in that area, the community of Doué la Fontaine also has its number of troglodytes. There even is an art environment that is realised in a garden at the exterior of a troglodyte, a creation by Bernard Roux.

Life and works

Roux was born in 1930 in Angers. He lived for some time in Saumur and when he got married in the early 1950's, the couple went to live in Doué la Fontaine, a community not far from the Loire river in the Saumur area.

He had various jobs, such as butcher, carpenter and mason, and currently he is retired.



From 1957 on Roux has been active in transforming the garden of his house into an art environment, decorating the walls with frescoes and mosaics and making assemblages of dolls and dwarfs.


The frescoes and mosaics on the wall depict characteristic houses, churches and castles from various regions in France. There are representations of people too, some of them inspired on Walt Disney characters.


Roux, who meanwhile is in his eighties, will still welcome tourists who visit Doué la Fontaine if they like to take a look around in the garden. The site can be visited when the gate is open.

La maison du macon
455 Rue des Perrières
49700 Doué la Fontaine, France
can be visited (when gate is open)

4 comments:

  1. Nice to be able to signal with the open gate. It seems very civilized.

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  2. Hello Suzan, Indeed, this is a friendly and civilised way of telling visitors they are welcome. I was informed about this by the local tourist office. All the best, Henk

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  3. Another one to add to my list... I wish I could spend full time just travelling to see places all over France and elsewhere in Europe, rest of world... But at very least, we can do some travelling vicariously... thanks to you Henk...

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  4. And I will do some travelling in my mind researching and composing the notes in this weblog, which is also a very nice experience. All the best, Owen.

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