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Actions !


Maxence Mathieu

Curator : Sophie Delhasse

33856 Rue Saint-Gilles

Maxence Mathieu addresses us by placing a book directly on the window. Tense, the cover of the book emphasizes the (un)crossable threshold of space and the starting point of an escape route that drags us inside, pushing the eye to the background, behind the scenes. Fluttering from a metal structure to the soft sparkle of neon, we are absorbed.

Upon closer inspection, the focal point leads us to surpass the breakthrough and question the visible but hidden background. One might wonder if, in attempting to guide our gaze, the artist is not enticing us to look aside or reconsider the entire scene unfolding before us. There is an ambiance, an atmosphere that nurtures the perception of a fictitious space, like an old memory, yet firmly rooted in reality as it is right in front of us. There are as well the details that the artist disperses as one constructs a score. The color of the neon, the tension of the plane, the position of the chromed structure, its appearance reminiscent of stage constructions in performances, and finally, there is this little book. A paperback authored by Erving Goffman, and its title may provoke a smile: The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Mirror effect, mise en abyme, projection; the scene gets populated by its actors. “The spectator hesitates to enter. In reality, he is already inside. […] the work requires his body. It urges him to take the stage too.”[1] So… Actions!

[1] Simon Brunfaut, Un paradis presque perdu, Edition du Secteur des Arts Plastiques du Hainaut, 2017.

Sophie Delhasse