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Another Liquid Sound, 2014 / CRAC19

Colors On Sound, 2013 / Entracte 








Born in 1976 in Berne, Switzreland.
Lives and works in Paris.

2002/2003   Post-diplôme à l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Lyon – section Art
2000/2001   DNSEP (5ème année) à l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Lyon –option Art avec mention du jury

"Mathias Schmied is simply fanatical about paper and drawing. All kinds of paper and drawing. He has adopted the latter as almost his only form of artistic expression and the former as his key raw material and crafted them both into a wholly innovative aesthetic code. His fascination for comic strips – which he appreciates as both ‘cheap consumer items’ and ‘collector’s items’ – is equal to his love of all forms of narrative literature. Indeed, texts and images are the recurring ingredients he draws upon to orchestrate his art. Schmied’s particular appreciation of the Spiderman character stems straight from the principle that underpins the very creation of the superhero’s adventures. Indeed each comic strip is the fruit of the imaginations of very different authors who are invited to spin the various webs that combine to structure the myth. This constant sense of renewal appeals to the artist whose work flows from the same serial-inspired approach which helps to guarantee an abundance of imaginative ideas and wealth of shifting interpretations.

The surprising nature of Schmied’s work stems from a completely unique technique in which the book he uses is deconstructed by cutting out images with all the finesses and richness of a drawing. This practice sees the artists handling a scalpel as others do pencil, charcoal or pen and he literally sculpts the images and texts he uses out of the work that represents his muse or raw material. This blockout technique, aesthetically conjured from nowhere, puts Mathias Schmied in the same ilk as artists such as Gordon Matta Clark and Michael Heizer. Not only does the very process become the œuvre, but with Scmied, the cut-out technique is dictated by the source material he works with. His work features series of pieces in which the drawing is both the medium and the form.

Here Schmied hollows out the pages of a comic book, removing all traces that do not directly concern the superhero and leaves us with an image seen through the spectrum of superimposed cut-out pages. There he sculpts the figure from different strips leaving evident traces of the source materials as he works on the floor. The cut-outs are then mounted on the wall to comprise a striking graphical frieze. In other parts he literally disembowels a book through its cover to leave several key words visible in the depths of the paper ‘intestines’. Elsewhere, having removed and placed in line the first pages of each chapter from a pulp fiction novel, the first page beginning, ‘Enlevez-moi ce truc-là’*, he blocks out text to create his own story made up snatches of conversation that are left untouched. And, finally, he takes pictures of models from girlie magazines, cuts the top third of their bodies into fine strips, leaving them to fall freely and completely deconstruct the expected visual code.

With this, Mathias Schmied endows drawing with a new materiality and a new field of expression combining the hidden and the exposed which thrills by disturbing our habits of perception. In comic strips, the artist’s work depends entirely on the internal superimposition of images and speech bubbles and it is the composition of the whole comic strip that dictates the style of the cut-out. His work thus presents a number of different variations: some pieces stress the framework construction of the comic strip while others centre on the bubbles and others focus on the narrative content. And since all are displayed under glass they lend a palimpsestic quality to each comic strip. Elsewhere, Schmied invents his very own virtual sound frieze made up of plasticized cut-outs of all the onomatopoeic ‘whack!’ ‘thwang!’ zoom!’ bubbles lifted from a comic strip and carefully pinned to the wall, one often overlapping another. Another resolutely abstract piece features cut-out paper circles of watercolour prints made with the bottom of a glass all tied together by a web of festive streamers.

The artist’s claim to apply the word ‘drawing’ to his different pieces finds its true pertinence at every level. First, in the realisation that they are all based on the notion of line as evidenced in every cut (homage to Matisse); then, in the cut-out elements that are related by connections that evoke the idea of rhizome (period detail); and lastly, in the relation with the idea of narrative which brings them closer to the world of writing (conceptual form of drawing), and – ultimately – in what is absolutely evident in his drawing, in other words what it makes us see. In many ways, the art of Mathias Schmied is testimony to the intelligence of a creative spirit that seeks to cultivate a playful and curious mind."

Text by Philippe Piguet – Mathias Schmied ou le caviardage comme formeévidente du dessin-.

* ” Get this thing off me!”



2014 - Another Liquid Sound, exhibition  at école d'art Gérard Jacot in Belfort (france), partnership with CRAC19 (Montbéliard, France)
– Colors on sound, Centre d’art L’Entracte, Sablé-sur-Sarthe, France
– L’architecture du son, Galerie Houg, Lyon

2013 – Retry Retry Retry, Galerie Estace, Paris, France

2011 – Solo show, Espace Mont-Blanc, Paris, France

2010 – Solid sound, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France

2009 – Le dessin évidem(m)ent, Espace d’art contemporain, Thonon-les-Bains, France
- Doubt box, Galerie Handle with care, Crest (26), France

2008 – Drawing battle round 2, Mathias Schmied vs Nicolas Ledoux, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France

2007 – I hate the way I love, Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, USA

2006 – Institut français de Stuttgart, Germany (residence of 3 month)
- Ideal crash test, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France

2005 – Amok, Galerie Basta, Lausanne, Switzerland
- Bitter than sweet, Bureau pour l’art contemporain d’Olivier Houg, Lyon, France

2004 – Maison des expositions, Genas, France

2002 - VersuS, avec Anthony Musso, Atelier 4 aux Subsistances, Lyon, France



2014 – Shown or to be Shown, Galerie Houg, Lyon, France
– Superman, Batman and Co...mics!, La Maison d’Ailleurs, Yverdon-les-bains, Switzerland

2012 – PROP / Vol.1, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France
- Words and Dreams, Galerie Magda Danysz, Paris

2011 - Microwave 8, Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, USA
- One shot/1, Lausanne, Suisse
- Paris forever, 100ème exposition de la galerie Magda Danysz, Paris

2009 - Microwave 7, Judi Rotenberg Gallery, Boston, USA
- Douanes : papiers, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France

2008 – Institut français de Stuttgart, Germany
- Echange croisé entre des artistes plasticiens du Land Baden-Würthenberg et de la région Rhône-Alpes

2007 - Addicted on paper, Galerie Lelong, Zürich, Switzerland
- De leur temps II, Musée de Grenoble, France
- Drawings and papers part II, Grusenmeyer art Gallery, Deurles, Belgium

2006 – This ain’t no karaoke, Galerie Haas & Fischer, Zurich, Switzerland
- Art on paper biennial, Weatherspoon museum, The university of north Carolina at Greensboro, NC, USA

2005 – Traces d’enfances, Galerie RX, Paris, France
- Paramour, Espace Art 45 – Biennale d’art contemporain de Lyon, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France
- Just what is it that makes today’s homes so different, so appealing? Les Subsistances, Lyon, France

2004 – New papers, Galerie Christinerose / Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, USA
- Talking to your self again, L’endroit, Le Havre, France
- Libres échanges 2004 Lyon/Montréal, Galerie Trois points, Montréal, Canada
- Biennale d’art contemporain, La spezia, Italia

2003 – Post diplômes de Lyon, Ateliers d’artiste de la ville de Marseille, France
- Window licking, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France
- Rendez-vous, Galerie des Terreaux, Biennal d’art contemporain, Lyon, France
- Augurales, Centre d’art contemporain de Brétigny-sur-Orge, France

2002 – Crash test, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France
- Les enfants du Sabbat 3, Centre d’art contemporain le Creux de l’enfer, Thiers, France
- 1/12 et 12/1, Les Subsistances, Lyon, France
- Inauguration des bureaux parisiens de la communauté urbaine de Lyon, Olivier Houg Galerie, Lyon, France

2001 – A proximité des espaces en construction, with Anthony Musso and Pascal Beausse, – Atelier 4 at Subsistances, Lyon, France
- Inauguration du MUDAC, Lausanne, Switzerland



2003 – 2014 :

DrawingNowParis 2014, Paris, France
DrawingNowParis 2013, Paris, France
The Wall Art Fair 2012, Lyon, France
Slick2012, Paris, FranceDrawing
NowParis 2012, Paris, France
Nota fair, Rotterdam, Pays-bas
Fiac Paris, Paris, France
Scope New York, New York, USA
Tiaf, Toronto, Canada
Nada Art Fair, Miami, USA
Year 2006 (Frieze art fair Off), London, GB
Arco Madrid, Madrid, Espagne
Balelatina (Art basel Off), Bâle, Suisse
Art Brussels, Bruxelles, Belgique
Show off, Paris, France
Salon du dessin contemporain, Paris, France
The solo project (Art Basel Off), Bâle, Suisse
Art Amsterdam solo, Amsterdam, Pays-bas
Art Paris, Paris, France
VOLTA BASEL, Bâle, Suisse



Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
Fondation Rothschild, New York, USA
Fonds national d’art contemporain, Paris, France
Musée Paul Dini, Villefranche-sur-Saône, France
FRAC Rhône-Alpes, Lyon, France
Ville de Lyon, France