Minh Châu

Minh Châu

Sculptor
3 exhibitions / 14 artworks available / 2 artworks sold
Biography : The act of creation has always been at the core of Artist and sculptor Minh Châu. As a teenager, her passion first expressed itself through fashion design, with a special attention to textile materials. Therefore, she naturally studied in this field, graduating in June 1999 from Lyon’s la Martinière Terreaux School of fashion before working for Claude Bauer, a company based in the Vosges and specialized in prêt-à-porter. However, Minh Châu wanted to keep pushing the boundaries of creation and decided to work as a freelancer for contemporary Art photographers to put together prototypes for their video performances and photo shoots. This is the reason why she collaborated with Gabriela Morawetz for her performance “Continuum” as part of the 2014 Japanese Biwako Biennale. When Minh Châu was about to give birth, creating clothes no longer satisfied her. This is how the desire to create new bodies came to her. Paper quickly became self-evident as her favorite material. All together flexible, malleable, but also rigid and hard, Minh Châu unveils the richness of paper. Her sculptures represent tall and very thin bodies in waiting positions. She is inspired by multiple sources: the observation of passers-by and their positions, faces with marked features and Artworks of international Artists such as photographer Lee Jeffries, sculptors Rodin, Giacometti and Aron Demetz but also painters such as Soulages. Minh Châu models bodies and tells their story to better breathe life into them while inviting the audience to freeze time. 
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Artistic Statement : Minh Châu uses papier-mâché to model tall and very thin bodies. As a result, her first sculpture was a 6 feet tall lopsided woman, standing still, arms crossed in her back, in a waiting posture. The aim was to represent her daughter’s body who was striking the pose for her, as another human being was growing inside of the Artist. Paper soon became self-evident as her main material. Flexible, malleable but also rigid and hard, paper encapsulates the richness the Artist intends to exploit. She always starts working on a dry surface, on a pedestal that fashion stores use to put up their mannequins. From then she builds on the skeleton with wooden sticks and wire. Afterwards she glues the paper to shape her sculpture along a certain line, following the same process step by step. Therefore, the Artist uses the fashion codes which always refer to verticality that starts from the head and goes to the malleolus of our standing foot which forms a line that has to stay straight. The support is her verticality, and the sculpture circles around it. The fact that the Artist used to be a fashion designer transversally influences both her work and Artistic statement. Her goal is to give her sculpture a rough and creased aspect, like a primal skin. Her inspiration is deeply empirical and multi-faceted, building up day by day, by observing people’s expressions and poses around her as well as faces’ expressions, especially those with marked features. Her first sculptures are either black or white but she continuously thinks about ways to dress them and breathe even more life into them. As a result, the marks of time on the skin interest her which can be translated in her Artworks through the use of paper to reproduce the richness of skin’s textures. To create matter is to invite people to pay attention to details and to the marks of time. 
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