MOMENTA X GALERIE DE L'UQAM
Galerie de l’UQAM is pleased to announce its participation in the 18th edition of MOMENTA Biennale de l’image, presented from September 7 to October 22, 2023. Designed by curator Ji-Yoon Han, Masquerades: Drawn to Metamorphosis aims to explore the dynamics of visibility and invisibility that shape representations of the self and the other from the metamorphic potentials of mimicry. Deployed in fifteen locations across the city, the biennial program will bring together 23 artists from abroad, representing 15 countries, and from 4 provinces and 4 Indigenous nations of Canada. From one exhibition to the next, processes of transformation, mimicry, and mutation will be activated, questioning the functions of the image, between representation and metamorphosis.
As part of the 18th edition of MOMENTA Biennale de l’image, Galerie de l’UQAM will have the great pleasure to present the artists Marion Lessard (Canada), Émilie Pitoiset (France) and Naomi Rinćon Gallardo (Mexico).
Marion Lessard is a collective of five people – Marie Cherbat-Schiller, Alice Roussel, Jean-Nicolas Léonard, Claude Romain, and Élisabeth M. Larouine (all distinct personalities but with an inevitable family resemblance), that examines and brings out the philosophical, sociopolitical, and cultural structures on which Western notions of identity are based. This unusual structure, both individual and collective, acts as a clouded mirror that reflects the paradoxes of living together.
In The Roman de Remort, or the inhumane, villainous fabliaux of the Ultimate Carnaval (2023), Marion Lessard appropriates the medieval literary model to present the human character of Remort, who feels deeply remorseful for the centuries of harm that has been inflicted upon so-called Nature. Here, the blending of humans and animals is taken to extravagant and absurd new heights through disguises, split personalities, and theatrical reversals and turnarounds. Combining medieval satire with musical comedy, Marion Lessard’s exhibition at the Galerie de l’UQAM will take the form of an immersive work in which gallant language masks and unmasks the exhilarating horror of the possible end of the human world.
French artist Émilie Pitoiset explores the dynamics of equilibrium and disequilibrium in human and animal bodies inspired by Western popular cultures and practices. Since 2009, Pitoiset has amassed a collection of anonymous photographs of marathon dancers onto which she draws lines that act like visible vectors of their depleted states. She uses this intuitive geometry to choreograph sculptural and photographic installations.
The photographic interventions of Pitoiset considered as “body scores” manifest in the series Tainted Love (2017 – 2019), a reference to the British synth- pop duo Soft Cell’s cult hit version of the song from the early 1980s—a period of world- wide upheaval marked by the advent of neoliberal deregulation, the rise of neoconservatisms, and the devastating AIDS epidemic. Through the exhibition MANIAC, Pitoiset’s work is entirely driven by the human body’s will to never give up, to break the limits of its biological functions and to go beyond itself, to enter a mimetic trance that mirrors the structural upheavals that affect any given society.
NAOMI RINCÓN GALLARDO
Artist-researcher Naomi Rincón Gallardo creates counternarratives of dissent, utopia, and desire that are meant to throw off the yoke of alienation. Powerfully incantatory, her videos combine multiple forms of narrative and performance, including music videos, vernacular festivities, theatre, dance, speculative fiction, audio-visual archives, singing, poetry, and spoken word. Based in Oaxaca, Rincón Gallardo’s process relies on a feminist re-reading of ancestral Mesoamerican mythology, combined with modern-day stories of the struggle to preserve land and biodiversity.
The exhibition Masquerade for the End of Times puts forward an underworld fauna that comes to life in order to calm a long sacrificial chant. Naomi Rincón Gallardo and her acolytes embody a bat, a scorpion, a snake, a colony of vultures, and a choir of paranormal amphibians: a human, animal, and divine demimonde that rolls in the muck and relishes the dark. This masquerade sets up a mediumistic space for metamorphoses in which a ritual allows communication to occur with the dead and the undead, the human and the more-than-human.