Il N'EN EST RIEN
Originally from the Outaouais, Mathieu Cardin lives and works in Montreal. With this exhibition at B-312, the artist finish his master's degree at Concordia University. His installations have been presented in Quebec, notably at AXENÉO7 (2008), Parisian Laundry, Art Souterrain, Guido Molinari Foundation (2014), centre L'Écart and Symposium international d’art contemporainde Baie-Saint-Paul (2015). His work have also been presented in France (MPVite, Nantes, 2012), In Mexico (Museo Taller Erasto Cortés, Puebla et Cuernavaca, CMAEM, 2013) and most recently in Italy (Rad’Art, San Romano, 2015).
Galerie B-312 is pleased to host the exhibition, Il n'en est rien by Mathieu Cardin. This young Montréal artist likes to lose the visitor in spectacular immersive installations where it becomes difficult to disentangle the real from the false. In the manner of film studios, the artist creates dummy universes to browse. Strange constructions, colorful and eccentric, both seductive and intriguing. This is the case of Il n'en est rien, where, for this occasion, the space of the Galerie B-312 has been transformed entirely. The architecture of the installation, among other things, its counter and its illuminated sign, immerses the visitor into a commercial context from the entrance, where everything has been contemplated to highlight the objects for sale. However, the displays are empty, void of their products, as if it were a shop where there would be nothing to consume. Nevertheless, the objects are not completely absent since their photos are there. Most often absurdly glorified as they are mass produced, their image tends to evoke an amplified desire. One can then wonder to what extent is representation a pretence? And what happens when, a little further, the curious spectator, daring to cross the backstage gates, realizes that the abstract landscape image they have initially contemplated is actually composed a multitude of objects? Where is the truth? Where is the illusion? In the image of the object? Or in an image that is actually an object itself? If the warehouse is generally a place hidden from view, without deception, having only a functional purpose, here we are allowed to doubt the authenticity of the boxes that are accumulated and objects arranged here and there, whose packaging seems to be staged. What is striking in this exhibition where everything escapes the viewer is that in the end the most tangible thing that constitutes it, is the experience that one lives there. The central theme of this project is representation itself, and its strategies, a notion that prevails here over the materialism which is normally the artist’s intention.
Original text in French by Ophélie Chalabi