Mise en Abyme. Cyril Hatt
15.09.2021 - 16.10.2021

Mise en Abyme
Cyril Hatt

15.09.2021 – 16.10.2021

15.09.2021, 18:00 Vernissage
16.09.-19.09.2021, 13:00-19:00 Berlin Art Week

The artist represents himself, the gallery owner, the galleryassistant, and the curator. Between unfinished sculptures and works still to be unpacked, these characters seem to converse about an upcoming exhibition. Visitors will also see new works by Cyril Hatt created after his own past pieces. With an exhibition that seems to have stopped in the middle of its construction, Cyril questions reality by superimposing different layers of it one on top of the other. The exhibition project is the theme of the current show. We hope that this mise en abyme will be confusing.

The clock
The three characters
The time on the Comtoise clock has been set at 16.35 by the photos it is made of. This is the time when the artist, the gallery owner and the curator are talking about the next exhibition. The photos that reconstruct these three characters were taken the day after the opening of the last exhibition, in the afternoon, at 16.35. The artist is in a short shirt, the gallery owner is wearing sandals, the curator’s outfit is the same all year round. They surround a head of Apollo that the artist photographed in the Museum of Natural History in Nîmes. It is placed on a freshly painted white base on a newspaper sheet on which the announcement of Cyril Hatt’s latest exhibition was published. On that day, it was decided that the September exhibition would be a Mise en Abyme. Cyril would arrange the gallery in such a way as to make the current project the theme of the exhibition.

Esther Ferrer
Pair of shoes
A Mise en Abyme is the image of the image within the image. In a work adapted from Esther Ferrer’s El Libro de las Cabezas- Evolución – Metamorfosis, we see a bust portrait of the artist whose tiny face takes the place of her nose.
At the foot of this work, a few pairs of shoes are lined up next to each other. Look closely, and you will notice a pair of real shoes next to its replica made of photo paper and staples.

Sardine bank
The sardine has a blue back and a white belly. This means that predators coming from the sky mistake it for water and predators coming from below for daylight.
By looking away from the mirror, the reflected image disappears. Cyril Hatt photographed these two mirrors to question the ephemeral by trying to fix it.

The face of the mask hanging in the window is made of fragments of faces of Cyril’s friends he met in the bistros of the region where he lives. The mask in the back room is composed of the gallery assistant, the artist, the gallery owner and the curator. As for the wolf, the original is in the Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature in Paris. He welcomes us into the gallery without frightening us. On the contrary: his physiognomy betrays his fragility. Above him, a photo by Cyril shows him in the wilderness soiled by empty wine bottles, in front of a red truck that partly blocks the sky.

The poster
This is a poster that time has erased. Its frame makes it look like a work of art. Its past is residual. As Henri Bergson wrote in Mind-Energy (L’Énergie spirituelle): “The present moment… is the moving mirror which ceaselessly reflects perception into memory”!

The package
The package contains the Mise en Abyme exhibition. Cyril sent it a week before going to Berlin. Unfortunately, the postal code of the address in Berlin where the package was to be delivered is the same postal code of a town in the north of France. After being scanned in Cologne, the package was returned to France. When Cyril arrived in Berlin, the package was still on its way. The transport company told us that it would be returned to the sender. Cyril had no more material available to set up the exhibition. It was panic. We had to print out some relevant photos that Cyril had saved on his computer. He spent three days hard at work in the gallery. Finally, the exhibition was ready in time, and he returned to France. Two days after his departure, the package arrived in Berlin. Cyril told us to put it under the big mirror.

St. Expedit
There is no relic of Expedit and his real existence has long been questioned. In 1906, Pius X struck his name from the martyrology. However, he is venerated, especially on the island of Reunion. He is the saint of driving licences, business people, schoolchildren, etc. In a text by Philippe Reignet, Saint Expédit, in Reunion: a geo-ethnographic approach, we discover the following: There is a legend on Reunion Island, peddled by Prosper Eve, that Saint Expedit was invented by mistake by a group of sisters from the island who received relics from Rome in a package on which was written “in expedito”, without mentioning which saint the relics came from.
The photo of the replica and the replica of Saint Expedit itself, which is also a replica of the one in the package at the foot of the large mirror, show that the unreal is manufactured by the real.