La Traversée takes the viewer on a journey into the multifaceted photographic work of French documentary maker Mathieu Pernot (°1970). He analyses our contemporary society using both archival sources and his own photographs: the themes of emigration, social housing and homelessness run like leitmotifs through his work. However, Pernot is not interested in presenting one-sided interpretations and his images evoke the constant flux that is the reality of life.
There is an underlying sense of transition in the work: from freedom to captivity, from illegal to legal, from public to private, and from one country to another. There is no stasis in this “Crossing”. The work of Pernot is, therefore, nomadic and fragile, both in subject (mainly Roma people), in form (photographs, archive material, objects and audio clips) and in time (individuals who appeared in earlier pictures return in altered circumstances many years later).
The exhibition presents a selection taken from various Mathieu Pernot series from the past twenty years. There is almost a cartographic dimension created by the interrelationships between individuals, places, moments in time and story lines. Everything seems to be connected in this dialogue, by order and by chaos.
The exhibition was organised by Jeu de Paume, Paris, in collaboration with FotoMuseum Antwerp. The exhibition is curated by Mathieu Pernot, Marta Gili and Joachim Naudts.