Mannikin. The man inside the man, is the soul.
An event about enchanted trees and pudding, women and children, beauty and consolation, Leprechauns and Cuchavira, The goddess of the rainbow.
For this three-day event Michèle Matyn has found inspiration in the 2 months the artist has spent as Artist in Residence together with her two sons in Andalusia. Here they lived and worked as a three-part collective. Work, surroundings and (family)life were practically inextricable during this time. The direct physical surroundings of the Andalusian nature, the Spanish culture and daily life that took place in these surroundings all played a significant part in the development of the work.The Y-forms of the centuries-old cork oak trees that cover the hills are reminiscent of a figure that raises its hands to the sky. At the same time it embodies a trinity: two come together and continue as one, or one splits up in two. ‘whY’? these trees seemed to ask Matyn. Responding to this question she tried to find answers in a direct interconnection with the material: the trees, the clay, through drawing and photography and in working and living with Ewoud and Bernhard. Matter, life and work all became part of a larger search for the answers to the question Y.
The exhibition space of 1646 was a reflection of all this material research, where all the senses were triggered. Textile, foam, pudding, clay, a construction of a slide demanding the viewer to make a choice when it splits up in two tracks. The complete work presented here contains many references, not just to nature and its materials but also to the Spanish catholic culture with regard to the worship of Mary. The ritual culture that surrounds the Lady of Sorrows smoothly integrates in the hodgepodge of this space.
The three-day event started with a performance on Friday evening. In the two following days visitors could immerse themselves into this installation of projections, photography, ceramics and textile.
Many of Matyn’s projects serve as licenses for adventurous travels and rambles through the most desolate of places in extreme circumstances. Michèle Matyn uses her camera in a very intense and personal experience of the landscape, and in a fashion highly contrasting to the usual documentary approach of distance and objectivity.
Her sensitivity for nature is stimulated by research in age-old folk tales and customs, anthropological myths and sagas, but also popular comics and films about the narrow, supposed boundaries between man and animal, between human and demon. These animistic thoughts, folktales, and charged places are triggers for Michèle Matyn’s travels. She uses traveling as an atelier. The way of dealing with her surroundings can be read as ‘participative observation’. It connects Matyn’s photography to her performances.