Matthew Lutz-Kinoy Southern Garden of the chateau Bellevue

February 3 – May 20, 2018

37 rue de Longvic, 21000 Dijon

Curated by Stéphanie Moisdon
Thanks: Freedman Fitzpatrick, Los Angeles & Paris; Mendes Wood DM, Sao Paulo & Brussels & New York

At the origin of the huge arrangement of paintings and ceramics produced by Matthew Lutz-Kinoy for Le Consortium, there lies the living memory of the rooms dedicated to the painter François Boucher in the museum of the Frick collection in New York: a series of wall panels depicting children carrying out tasks for adults. Mocking, chubby-cheeked putti, their complexion like mother-of-pearl, developing in a rich chromatic range, its shades of colour as refined as they are scandalous. What emanates from these rooms is a boudoir look, a nonchalant eroticism, the temptation of the decorative and the taste of that 18th century for exoticism, a whole bric-à-brac of carpets and ceramics. Where the blond, the blue, the pink, and the orange all pleasantly blend. The painter of the rococo would be duly reproached for that frivolous extravagance: so much levity, so much ease! Today, several centuries after the revolution, Boucher still incarnates a deterioration of the values of art and politics, with his art being involved in a dubious area, stripped of all notions of conflicts. But what catches Matthew Lutz-Kinoy’s attention most of all is the way the pictures fill the salon’s jigsaw-like woodwork. The painting taken in a totality, a field drawn and criss-crossed by the landscape of that inner space.

The canvases, which cover and divide the room at Le Consortium into large segments, incorporate and transform Boucher’s wet rocaille images, they exceed them, with effects of erasure rather than burying. They exceed the subjects and bodies, nature and its order, and, by layering, invent a structure akin to a maze-like network, a diagram or a system; more a liquid image than a landscape, a liquid and non-gaseous perception, capable of expressing the fluidity of things and the immaterial movement which carries the figure away.

It is on the basis of these movements, these effects of edging, framing and montage, that Matthew Lutz-Kinoy produces a space made of all the others, a heterotopia in a way, a division of time, with the power to juxtapose several sites in a single real place,, a theatre which introduces into the gallery’s rectangle a whole series of places foreign to one another; in this way, to the residual and fragmentary representation of Boucher’s paintings are added fragmented and enlarged plans of the garden of Bellevue castle, an entire system of lines and curves which structure the whole and refer to language, archives and the at once symbolic and documentary value of it all.

The garden is the oldest figure of the heterotopias, it is the smallest parcel and the totality of the world. The garden is like the umbilicus, the navel of the world in its centre. It is a carpet where the whole world achieves its symbolic perfection, and the carpet is also a sort of moveable garden across space. The anthropomorphic ceramics arranged on the surface of the tatami mats compose this moveable garden, like so many bodily vessels which interact with the entirety of the landscape.

The idea of accumulating everything, the idea of forming a kind of general archive, the desire to confine within an enclosed place exterior spaces, times and periods, forms and tastes, the idea of forming a place of all times which is itself outside time, the project of thus organizing a sort of perpetual and indefinite accumulation of time in a place that does not move, well, all this belongs to our modernity. Which is to say to the political issue of genders and identities, and their transformation.

Stéphanie Moisdon