Martin Le Chevallier

Born in 1968

Lives and works in Rennes

Martin Le Chevallier was born in May 1968 into a family of left-wing Catholics. He started his career as a graphic designer, first working in collaboration with others (Roman Cieslewicz, Pierre Bernard, and the collective of designers Tamanoir), and then solo. The 1995 general strikes in France prompted him to auto-produce his own political posters. But it was his meeting with Jean-Charles Massera, who invited him in 1997 to participate in an exhibition, that was to lead him to contemporary art. Wager 1.0, his contribution to the exhibition, is aninteractive CD-ROM that plays on corporate jargon. Having discovered the potentials of interactivity, he went on to create other worksexploring the possibilities of an interactive relationship to the spectator/user, notably in interactive videos. Promising as the reception of his early output was, the artist decided in 2005 to take a different road and try his hand at making a feature film. An abrupt interruption to this project two years later resulted in his return to art. Thinking that he'd taken his exploration of interactivity as far as he wanted, he turned to other forms and notably to contextual approaches that lend themselves better to political work: actions, processes, performances, site-specific installations, etc. The constant in all these works, regardless of the medium, is the critical eye he brings to bear on the contemporary world and the way in which he interferes with it. In his 2008 The Audit, he mocks his own status as a “former young promising artist” by having a consulting firm assess his chances of success and how best to achieve it. Straightaway, he did his best to disregard the conclusions and pursue his investigations wherever his concerns or fancies would take him, notably in film works or immersive pieces that have the potential to open up other possibilities.

*In 2016, after two decades of creations, Jean-Marc Huitorel says to him: “It's time to make a book!”

Biography from the catalog : Martin Le Chevallier, Utopies, Galerie Jousse Entreprise editions, 2016*

Biographical notes translated with the support of the Centre national des arts plastiques - Cnap.