Mathilde Lavenne: Tropics

Mathilde Lavenne


In the 19th century, a French community crossed the Atlantic to settle in Jicaltepec along the Nautla River, in the Veracruz region of Mexico. These French families, who were mostly just farmers, were able to build large agricultural operations over generations despite the hostile tropical environment and climate. Since the Spanish conquest, Mexico has embodied a western mythological reverie: Amazons guiding the Conquerors in their quest for a new land, but also, the idealization of a new world lled with lush vegetation, the development of medicine through the use of new plants, and the evangelical ambition of a better world. If part of the European fantasy made sense as of the rst contact with the New World, it also destroyed a great deal of “primal” knowledge by merging with the pre-Columbian peoples.

Taking the form of a 3D archaeological expedition, TROPICS draws an orbit around these territories from which arise scattered voices expressing their secret stories and their relations with the ghosts of past time. Confronting a conception of the world with advanced technology ironically creates a visual matter akin to constellations of information—reminiscent of our connection to the cosmos, but also of a certain mathematical essence common to each and every thing.

At the pace of a pulsating sound resonating within a space without end or gravity, the lm attempts to stop time and men, and reveals the ghost of a lost paradise.

Mathilde Lavenne was born in 1982, in France.

In 2011, she began focusing her artistic approach on emerging technologies and digital tools by writing short lms and creating interactive installations. In 2016, she graduated from Fresnoy, Studio National des Arts Contemporains, after two years of research into the image.

In 2015, his lm Focus on In nity received the Francois Schneider Foundation’s ContemporaryTalents Prize. Her work has been presented in France at the Palais de Tokyo, in Italy at Villa Medicis, and in Madatac in Spain where she continues her research as a member of the Casa de Velázquez, Academie de France in Madrid.

In 2018, she was awarded the Golden Nica Prize by the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz, Austria.



Centro de Cultura Antiguo Instituto

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