DPV first year anniversary special // M. Devavry interview //

27 Apr

M. Devavry

Mathieu Devavry lives in my city : Lyon,France.  I first met this unique dancer, painter, scriptwriter and movie director in the street.  Later on, we met several more times randomly in my quarter. The connection was obvious, exciting and really cool.

Not so long after, he asked me if I would like to work with him on his dance/theatre and video project, a huge show mixing different people and media, I accepted this exciting opportunity immediately.

When I had to pick an artist to interview for the first DPV anniversary, Mathieu was the first to come to mind. We corresponded (in French, this piece was later translated to English) regarding the story of his artistic activities from 2003 to 2011.

Mathieu tells about the last years:

During the summer 2003, after I’ve met three artists and a producer, we started to write a scenario but never put it in images.

Then, in 2005, with the collective “Chouech”, we got back to the project, giving it a name – “Sous Cid Toi” – which, as its name in French points, is a suicidal project based on The Dance of the Painter, but it was a failure… Our copyrights were stolen by the fake producer…and we forbid the use of our images.

In 2007, after I settled in Lyon, I met Jean Baptiste Lepreux and Jeanne Morel  and decided to write the scenario again. The first images revealed themselves, the framework was born, and the introduction in “stop-motion’ was realized: “the suicide in the bathtub”. We were setting up the cube, the main point of the story, but then a drama occurred. The project was put on hold after one of the film makers died…

Three years passed, and here we are in the summer 2010, after some discussion, meetings, and making contacts with the video team, the light team, the music team, the photo team and the writers, it became a 18 persons engaged in this project called “Indicium”. It was a fantastic experience!


Babasama:  Let’s talk about the story of the central character in this

Devavry: The first idea was to tell the story of a girl in trouble who is between life and death, or more exactly, in a slice of life, in a tunnel, before the light at it’s end, between the little death, a coitus, a Sleep apnea…This moment is transcribed with different medias, it represents her mental imprisonment, materialized by a white cube (a square, an episode…). She appears in a fetal position, between reincarnation, rebirth and shamanic vision. A naked body in the middle of this cube, between disappearance/appearance/dream/reality, it takes life, takes consciousness of his limbs.

She glides into this restricted frame, always in interaction with various evolutions: birth, awakening, body consciousness, observation, retrospection, seeking for freedom, mental imprisonment, observation, aloneness, irritation, anxiety, crisis, escape, destruction of the cube with strips of her life, tearing down pieces of journal paper from the wall of the cube…

Flooded in the journal paper, she get lost inside it, then comes out again cleared, dressed with her souvenirs,  she realizes that she can’t get out of being alone, this psychedelic craziness, between a bad-trip, dream, reality, consciousness. It’s an open window between ambiguity of the suicide and a psychedelic orgasm.

Babasamas: What are your artistic references in this story?

Devavry: For the first part (2003-2010), concerning the video part, Yves Klein is THE reference!

His live performances are situated between a plastic showpiece and a scenic piece. For the second part, the one we’re working on at the moment (2011), Josef Nadj was an important artist in my aesthetic construction. He helped me, he was a bridge. For me, he is the link between the canvas and the stage. He found the process that reveals for me the astral travel (how the lifeless doll on a painting in an attic and the dancer on the stage, living the canvas through the motion, the sound and obviously, the aesthetic…

Babasamas: Can you tell a bit more about the psychedelic side of the project?

Devavry: Our goal with these effects was to calibrate, with blue tones, to get away from the “real”. The mesh size of the beginning brings this world between virtual and reality. Disappearance of the character emphasizes this psychedelic state.

She takes out “strips of her life”, letting some blurred images, destructing this solitude, this bad-trip, and coming out from this negation to enter the reality of life, like awaking to consciousness.

In the second part, she gets out of her body, like an astral rise, an awakening after death. Now, she travels inside this known environment, in relative freedom, between life and death. The mouse hole could symbolize an exit, an escape, but also an endless loop, an eternal renewal.

Babasamas: Finally, can you tell us a bit your 2011 project?

Devavry: While trying to schedule “Incidium” in several short film festivals, I realized it was not complete, and hardly comprehensible.  I tried to develop the project on stage, then met Manuel Pons (director) and Samantha Barenson (writer). We wrote again the text, the script, the choreography and ending of the whole story…

We are now in a final stage of creation, with 45 actors, artists and technicians; the play is being staged for the first time onMay 31, 2011and takes the forms of an exhibition a show and meetings.


Moreover, here are the links of his other stuff, enjoy !

Paintings:  http://www.facebook.com/media/set/fbx/?set=a.216185532364.135028.621437364

Various stuff: http://www.myspace.com/devavry_mathieu/photos

Poems (in French and Spanish): http://www.facebook.com/media/set/fbx/?set=a.216185532364.135028.621437364

and for anything else: devavry_mat[at]hotmail.fr

3 Responses to “DPV first year anniversary special // M. Devavry interview //”

  1. ULTIMAYA April 27, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

    Very interesting one 🙂

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