Mise-En-Abyme Installation

“ Mise-En-Abyme is not just something to look at. It is something to experience.”

Mise-En-Abyme is a french term meaning “placed into abyss” .It is an artist’s technique of creating an image that has smaller copies of itself in a recurring fashion.

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri - Photography :  Ed Reeve

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri – Photography : Ed Reeve

The duo of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri were allotted an amazing bridge for placing their masterwork on display. Instead they ended up transforming the whole space itself, into a work of art!

At the very beginning, they looked at the site surroundings to understand the context. They found that there was a Renaissance room downstairs and a glass room next door. “We found out that during the Renaissance, perspective line drawing was created” said Matteo Fogale. All this information together acted as a foundation for the design of the bridge.

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri - Photography :  Ed Reeve

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri – Photography : Ed Reeve

To start with color, they used customized tiles on floor and placed it in grids. What makes it special is its slow transformation of color along the length of bridge, from light blue to dark blue. Each row has three percent more color then the previous.

Talking about transparency, they also used different shades of acrylic sheets and placed it vertically in the very same transformative way at equally spaced intervals. Furthermore, due to the overlapping of sheets, the bridge is less transparent at the start, but the transparency increases as you move. The sheets were designed so that it seems there are no supports. But transparent balustrades along the sides act as a bracing.

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri - Photography :  Ed Reeve

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri – Photography : Ed Reeve

“Stained glass was used a lot during the Renaissance,” said Fogale. “We used acrylic as an alternative to glass because it has the same characteristics and beautiful colours.”

Talking about size, they carved out irregular openings in those acrylic sheets to form a tunnel like space. The size of openings reduces gradually as you move along the tunnel. Allegri said, “When people walk through, they get the feeling of it becoming smaller and darker.”

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri - Photography :  Ed Reeve

Courtesy of Matteo Fogale and Laetitia de Allegri – Photography : Ed Reeve

The art truly celebrates ‘Perspective’ and hence the Renaissance. The artists successfully manipulated the perspective experience by exaggerating the sense of depth with the help of color, size and light. At a glance, what might appear to be longer, will actually result in quite a surprise and self-questioning of one’s own visual mapping!

By: Kushal Jain

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