Sculptor and stage director, Théo Mercier works on the relation between the work and its environment. In his installations, he mixes his own sculptures with objects or artifacts he collected over his travels, and seeks to create a real choreography of the eye for the viewer. Proclaiming a formal freedom in his practice, he strives to deconstruct the mechanisms of history, objects and representations in which he finds harmonious contradictions. By turns explorer, collector and artist, he engages in a reflection at the intersection of anthropology, geopolitics and tourism.
He studied in Paris at the National School of Industrial Design (ENSCI) and in Berlin at the Universität der Künste (UDK).
Théo Mercier has had personal exhibitions at the Luma Westbau, Zurich (2022); Collection Lambert, Avignon (2021); Le Portique, Le Havre (2021); the 13th Havana Biennial, Cuba (2019) ; Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature, Paris (2019); Museo El Eco, Mexico City (2017); Musée de l’Homme, Paris (2017); Musée d’art Contemporain, Marseille (2016); Lieu Unique, Nantes (2013); and Tri Postal, Lille (2012), among others.
He also participated in many collective exhibitions in international institutions such as Le Parvis, Tarbes (2022); Musée de la Vieille Charité, Marseille (2022); Pouchkine Museum, Moscow (2021); West Bund Museum, Shanghai (2021); Musée du Quai Branly, Paris (2021); Jameel Arts Center, Dubai (2019); Fonds Hélène et Edouard Leclerc, Landerneau (2019); Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (2018); Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City (2018); FRAC Bretagne, Rennes (2018); Museum of the archaeological site of Baalbek, Lebanon (2016); MAC VAL, Vitry-sur-Seine (2015); and Centre Pompidou, Paris (2013).
Shifting from a “white cube” to a “black box” practice, Mercier has directed Du futur faisons table rase (2014), Radio Vinci Park (2016, co-created with François Chaignaud), La Fille du collectionneur (2017), Affordable Solution for Better Living (2018, co-created with Steven Michel), BIG SISTERS (2020, co-created with Steven Michel) and OUTREMONDE, a series of living landscapes entirely made of sand sculpture (initiated in 2021). His performances have been presented at Nanterre-Amandiers; the Menagerie de verre, Paris; Usine C, Montreal; The Invisible Dog Art Center, New York; Actoral Festival, Marseille; Dampfezentrale, Bern; Vooroit Art Center, Ghent; or Vidy, Lausanne.
Théo Mercier was a resident at Villa Medicis in 2013, and nominated for the Marcel Duchamp Prize in 2014. In 2019, he won the Silver Lion at the Venice Dance Biennale.