Matthieu Saladin — Wind is insubstantial: visible and audible only through the objects in its path


Film, installation, sound - music

Matthieu Saladin
Wind is insubstantial: visible and audible only through the objects in its path

Past: December 1, 2017 → February 18, 2018

How much is a cubic metre of air worth?
How do we pay for the wind we need to travel from Europe to America and vice versa? 1

Perceived by the people affected by them as anonymous and devoid of behaviour that can be seen in advance, air movement and turbulence manifest themselves as ungovernable or hard to control—whether we enjoy their gentler effects or fear their destructive power. This explains the efforts the exhibition makes to measure them, and to measure itself against them. The Beaufort scale, physically absent from the installation, is nonetheless implicit everywhere within it2. Indirectly referred to be the arrangement of the display panels in the form of wind flags, it offers an initial way of grasping and estimating this untameable multiplicity: the avatars of an insubstantial type, whose habits alone—which we assign to it—prompt us to give it the stability of a name, are seen and heard in several different ways.

Walras, De la nature de la richesse et de l’origine de la valeur, Évreux, 1831. scale, established in 1805 by the future British admiral Francis Beaufort, was originally designed to offer sailors a series of visual reference points to estimate the force of the wind and the state of the sea. It was revised several times, first to include land-based references, then in the second half of the 20th century to connect the list of visually identifiable effects to measurements from modern anemometres and other scientific measuring instruments.
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28, rue de Thionville

75019 Paris

T. 33 9 72 30 98 70


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Wednesday – Friday, 2 PM – 7 PM
Saturday, 11 AM – 7 PM

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