Martín Levêque


The salvation of photography comes from the experiment.

-Laszlo Moholy-Nagy



ALMANAQUE presents French artist Martín Levêque (1987) first solo exhibition in Mexico, curated by art historian Alberto Ríos de la Rosa.


Arcadie is inscribed within the historical narrative that testifies to the intrinsic relationship that has existed between photography and sculpture. Beyond reproduction and representation, the sculptural object has found in the multiple facets of photography a suitable medium to approach abstraction.  Its ability to detach itself from reality and produce compositions that only exist in the construction of the image has facilitated this creative correlation. The exhibition displays a body of work produced between 2018 and 2021 that constitutes an abstract reality where the manipulation of the digital lens - typical of rational photography - is combined with a poetic approach to colour and form.


The Archipel series is built from compositions constructed from dynamic geometric figures and contrasting primary colours. Levêque is inserted in the modernist photographic heritage that emerged with Lászlo Moholy-Naghy (1895-1946) or Man Ray’s exercises as a means to explore the optical and expressive properties of light in objects. Thus, the forms that make up Archipel shed the meaning of the object that produces them and become autonomous entities that arise from both technical premeditation and chance.


In a second moment, the Arcadie series presents a group of sculptures and photographs that continue the artist's research on the subjective capacity of photography for three-dimensional construction. The series also elaborates a commentary on the waste of materials in the art industry production cycles. As an utopian concept, Arcadia refers to a place or physical state of harmony between all species and with nature. For Levêque, Arcadie is that idyllic space in which the overproduction and exploitation of natural resources is reduced by the recycling and reuse of its materials. The sculptures have been made from metal remains taken from production workshops in Mexico City. The photographs in the series present a set of involuntary sculptures that question the notions of space, time and form in abstraction.


In a third and final moment, Umbral presents four panels of reused wood that testify to the artist's approaches to sculpture as an object between two conceptual places. For Levêque, the panels represent that reconciliation between the natural world and the productive world, in which artisanal processes can give way to a better use of recycling and reuse techniques in creative production.


Alberto Ríos de la Rosa