I felt that I could not cope any more with the overgrowing demands of trade

© Benjamin Valenza

Known for her immersive installations comprising objects and films, and her mises en abyme illustrated through large high-definition digital images, Emmanuelle Lainé draws on the specificity of each exhibition context with the aim of offering what she refers to as a “method of place”. In line with the Art of Memory, her installations, strewn with objects drawn from the movable and immovable resources of the institutions to which she has been invited, act as interfaces between the space, the work and the audience.


Emmanuelle Lainé was invited, by the Saint-Martin Bookshop in Brussels, to create an installation to celebrate the opening of the bookstore in the former Maison Martin Margiella store. As is her wont, she worked on the history of the place, using associated photographs and objects taken from the store's personal collection. For the first time, however, the artist arranged her photographs taken in situ on autonomous elements, using an industrial aesthetic. Made up of different layers (sculpture, archives, photographs, installation), Emanuelle Lainé’s work questions our perception of space and creates confusion between the real and the unreal, between memory and presence. With I felt that I could not cope any more with the overgrowing demands of trade, “I felt that I could no longer bear the increasing demands of the market.” She invokes the ghost of the enigmatic, outstanding designer who created the former studio as well as the quote from his farewell letter, and reflects, through him, on the way capitalism consumes creativity.