Mathieu Hutin: Enchanting Angkor Wat

The Empty Quarter
DIFC, Dubai, UAE
12 November – 10 December 2018

This is Mathieu Hutin’s second exhibition at the Empty Quarter Gallery in Dubai. After his exhibition on “Guatemalan Coffee – The People behind your cup”, where Mathieu documented his journey through the divers and cultural world of coffee producers, he will now exhibit his fascination for the magical and mystical temples of Angkor Wat.

Angkor is one of the most important archaeological sites in South-East Asia. Stretching over some 1000 km2, including forested area, Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century.

Mathieu Hutin is a self-taught photographer. French born, having lived, studied and worked in Germany and England, Mathieu left his previous life as an investment banker in London to move to Guatemala and start his life over. This is when Mathieu discovered the power of photography and the possibility to share and transmit people’s stories, lives and emotions. Mathieu’s photography has become a major part of his own journey allowing him to re-discover himself. Since 2011 he has fully dedicated his time to mastering the art of photography and the art of truly discovering and redefining his true self.

With over 5 million annual visitor, discovering Angkor Wat can either be a shock due to the intensity of its visiting tourists, or a mesmerizing spiritual experience upon contemplating the beauty of this ancient temple.

Mathieu discovered Angkor late in 2015, and was immediately overwhelmed by the energy emitted by it. He travelled back to Angkor Wat in 2017 and 2018. Within the chaos created by the thousands of daily tourists, Mathieu found peace and harmony, as well as deep moments of connection between these ancient temples and some of their visitors. Humans allowed Mathieu to highlight the scale of the temple complex, but it is the buddhist monks visiting and living within the complex that added to the magic. The dramatic imposing scenery combined with the simplicity of the buddhist monks presents an absolutely amazing and unique contrast.

Just like in the rest of our life, we can either get lost inside the vast chaos we live in, or we can choose to engage and connect with the small daily moments of harmony and beauty.

©The Empty Quarter, Angkor Wat, “Bayon Temple”, Mathieu Hutin, 2015