VOX — Centre de l’image contemporaine

Mathieu Cardin

Portrait of Mathieu Cardin
Portrait of Mathieu Cardin. Photo : Béatrice Flynn, LA PRESSE.

Mathieu Cardin (born Matthew Carden in Agloe, U.S.A.) displayed outstanding skills in combat sports, gymnastics and theatre from an early age. These youthful pursuits left him with superior flexibility and a fantastic uppercut worthy of Arthur Cravan. He was originally interested in film and photography, and it was only after an especially liquid-fuelled discussion with a pilot and a doorman that he left his job as an administrative clerk to take up installation sculpture. With no experience in this field, he moved to Montreal, and a year later began MFA studies at Concordia University. He was accepted into the program and offered bursaries after showing a portfolio of images found online.

Cardin’s work consists primarily in sculptures and installations that combine accumulation and deconstruction, leaving it to the viewer to distinguish the fictional from the real. His works are often structured around a narrative thread in which the public partners with the artist, playing a dual role as actor and spectator. His installations have been shown in Canada, France, Italy, and Mexico. Since 2008, Cardin has lived and worked in Montreal and Scottsboro, Alabama, where he manages a company that buys unclaimed bags from airlines and resells their contents on eBay. [Source : VOX, 2020]