I am a little over my head here, but it may be in the works of Heidegger that the distinction between a thing and anything that attempts to represent it is called out.
Recalling from my reading, this includes the neurological impression a thing makes upon your sense of sight or touch or any other means of perception and the mysterious mechanism that transmits that impression to whatever your mind might be.
So certainly and obviously language, but I believe mathematics, too, can never be more than an imperfect representation of reality. However, it can be good enough: good enough for us to think meaningfully about it, to postulate theories on its hows and whys. So, this is no denigration of math, just a disquisition on epistemology - what it is possible for us to know.
I invite those with more developed educations to elaborate on this, and correct any errors.