Mahn Kloix grew up in a family of activists, motivated by the major combats of the social Left. Despite the card-carrying activism hovering over his head, the young man himself would choose a path where there was no party, but just as much commitment: artistic creation. In 2003 he entered Gobelins, l’école de l’image, and also studied in Besançon, where he came under the influence of Bauhaus and then the Swiss School. As Mahn Kloix, he then travelled, drew, and started to show his work in public. Based in Marseille since 2010, he makes the old historic city centre his departure point for exploring the “political and militant” Mediterranean basin.


In the heart of Istanbul, Mahn Kloix crossed the path of hundreds of young demonstrators. He set about sketching the protesters’ faces, and then paid tribute to them by displaying their portraits in the street. The uprisings of the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia or the Indignants movement in Athens also provided raw material for a worldwide project that was then slowly taking shape: Small is big. A leitmotiv for talking about and bringing struggles to light, taking ownership of conflicts, experiencing and bearing witness to the great currents of resistance, from New York to Cairo. A multi-medium project using archival images, shots by photo-journalists, Indian ink illustrations, large-scale enlargements, and involvement in the very heart of the urban space.


With the support of portraitist Peter Hapak — a reporter with Time Magazine — seen on the pages of the La Marseillaise daily newspaper and Vice Greece, the project continues to grow: “my exploration of these international ‘Contre-feux’, as Pierre Bourdieu liked to call them, is only just beginning. Whistle-blowers, refugees, activists within humanitarian organizations, Femens are just a few of the fractures, combats, and engagements destined to be featured in my work” the artist confides. – Théophile Pillault.




2021 — Design by Studio Bergini — Code by Tortuga Labs