Objects on a higher level

Lamps, furniture, bicycles, typography, museum pedestals – the work of Mathieu Mercier, winner of the Prix Marcel Duchamp (2003), born 1970 in Conflans-Saint-Honorine and now living in Paris, moves con­fidently between art and everyday culture. He keeps ­referring back to the work of his heroes Marcel Duchamp and Piet Mondrian. Yet, Mathieu Mercier does not want to make inaccessible art, but works that are »instantly descriptive and attractive«. The banal everyday objects he presents are indeed at first simply beautiful. Mercier speaks in this regard of »sublimation«, of a finishing ­process that guides the objects to a higher level. The targeted change of position, the permanent exchange between high and low, raises the question as to the ­status of things between functionality and artistic pur­poselessness. Mathieu Mercier skillfully reflects the ­concepts of Western culture of the 20th century in the field of tension between modern architecture, design and visual arts.