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Ways of Thinking is designed for anyone interested in exploring contemporary art and its exhibition frameworks. It offers contextualizing information on the concepts of the Gallery’s exhibitions and programs, the artists and the works featured. You can find a general presentation, areas of inquiry and ideas to reflect upon as well as suggested Internet links and bibliographic references that allow you to gain a general understanding of the artist’s approach to artmaking, the works featured and the curatorial framework adopted. It also offers a forum in which “ways of thinking” can be shared and compared: Within the ongoing program of the Gallery, and amongst the artists, curators, writers, and other contributors and participants including visitors. This takes on facets of physical and virtual forms, all of which are being collected here. Together, they form an information database and research repository that is accessible to students, teachers and anyone interested in the Gallery’s programs. This archive is an active one, because it renders the meeting points between the individual parts of the Gallery’s programs tangible.

OUT of SIGHT
Drawing by Bruno Rouyère

Stepping into the vestibule, before entering the gallery proper you are immediately presented with its maquette, a common but rarely public institutional tool usually shared between the curator and technical staff. Leaning over it permits a birds-eye view of the gallery and its five exhibition spaces. Using a model like this is one way to plan and test out an exhibition: miniature artworks and other elements are shifted around, architectural interventions are rehearsed, possible approaches to and transitions between the rooms are studied. Inviting projection and speculation the model suggests a certain primary form for the gallery and its role is to support the institution’s study of its own space. With its roof removed it provides a comprehensive and simultaneous view of the exhibition space, one that is entirely unavailable when standing within the gallery proper.

Looking up from the model, you’re a visitor again. You look out and around the gallery, instead of down and over. As a visitor you can generally circulate freely from work to work and room to room. Here, K (Karina) and LG (Lynda Gaudreau) approach you as you step into the gallery. They greet you and offer a guided tour.

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The exhibition turns out to be only half complete, its centre piece an unfinished film staring K. As K leads you through the gallery it might become apparent that in the absence of a resolved work, one of your roles as a viewer is to take on a cinematic function. You’re following a storyboard still in the works, testing out edits, linking images and performing transitions between rooms set as distinct scenes: a stage that K steps up on to, a room painted black and hung with works from the permanent collection and elsewhere, a photo studio, a lone electric organ, and a passage opening on to a corridor inside one of the walls. This is further assisted by a few key architectural interventions: the narrowing of door frames, hard-edged black angles painted along the walls that skew your perspective, changing soundtracks, and selective lighting.

By consenting to the tour you’re asked to play the camera, to provisionally frame the missing scenes, to take in both the project’s frayed edges and the excess of live performance and advance through the storyboard. Sometimes you’re surveying the gallery by stepping into its walls or walking through an exhibition of paintings embedded among the sets. Still others you’re pulled back into another form of exchange in spectatorship as K’s tour shifts between narration and dance.

At the end, on your way out you need to return to the vestibule, where you can pass by the model and peer back down onto the idea of the gallery.

– Robin Simpson, Public Programs and Education Coordinator

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

Auslander, Philipe. Liveness: Performance in a Mediatized Culture. London: Routledge, 1999.

Auslander, Philipe. Presence and Resistance: Postmodernism and Cultural Politics in Contemporary American Performance. Ann Arbour: University of Michigan Press, 1992.

Blau, Herbert. The Audience. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1990.

De Marinis, Marco. The Semiotics of Performance. Translated by Áine O’Healy. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1993.

Fraser, Andrea. “Museum Highlights: A Gallery Talk.” October 57 (Summer, 1991): 104-122.

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Féral, Josette. “De la performance à la performativité.” Communications 92, no. 1 (2013): 205-218.

Féral, Josette. “The Production of Theater: Stakes and Paradoxes.” Revista Brasileira de Estudos da Presença 3 no. 2 (2013): 566-581.

Foster, Susan Leigh. Reading Dancing: Bodies and Subjects in Contemporary American Dance. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986.

Gabler, Neal. Life: The Movie. New York: Knopf, 1998.

Giannachi, Gabriella, Nick Kaye and Michael Shanks, eds.. Archaeologies of Presence: Art, Performance and the Persistence of Being. London: Routledge, 2012.

Gil, José. “Paradoxical Body.” TDR: The Drama Review 50, no. 4 (Winter 2006): 21-35.

Goffman, Erving. The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Woodstock, N.Y.: Overlook Press, 1973.

Guy, Georgina. Theatre, Exhibition, and Curation: Displayed and Performed. Basingstoke: Taylor & Francis, 2016.

Lehmann, Hans-Thies. Postdramatic Theatre. Translated by Karen Jürs-Munby. London and New York: Routledge, 2006.

Merz, Christian. Impersonal Enunciation, or the Place of Film. Translated by Cormac Deane. New York: Columbia University Press, 2016.

Pontbriand, Chantal. “Lynda Gaudreau, Jocelyn Robert en entretien avec Chantal Pontbriand.” Parachute 102 (April/June 2001): 114-12.

Porter, Jenelle. Dance with Camera. Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, 2009.

Rodenbeck, Judith. Radical Prototypes: Allan Kaprow and the Invention of Happenings. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2011.

Rosen, Philip. Narrative, Apparatus, Ideology: A Film Theory Reader. New York: Columbia University Press, 1986.

Sontag, Susan. “Film and Theatre.” The Tulane Drama Review 11, no. 1 (Autumn, 1966): 24-37.

Schechner, Richard. “Drama, Script, Theatre, and Performance.” The Drama Review: TDR 17, no. 3 (1973): 5-36.

– – – – -. “Selective Inattention: A Traditional Way of Spectating Now Part of the Avant-Garde.” Performing Arts Journal 1, no. 1 (Spring, 1976): 8-19

Uroskie, Andrew V. Between the Black Box and the White Cube: Expanded Cinema and Postwar Art. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2014.

Vardac, A. Nicholas. Stage to Screen. New York: B. Blom, 1968.

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Produced with the support of the Frederick and Mary Kay Lowy Art Education Fund.

Translation: Simon Brown

Artist

Lynda Gaudreau

Lynda has been leading an international career in the field of choreography. Since 2003 her work has increasingly shifted away from the “black box” of the theatre stage towards the “white cube” of the gallery space. Her research transposes choreographic practices into other artistic languages (visual art, architecture, film) to investigate the perception of space, the human figure and the object.

Her choreographic approach involves a constant dialogue with architecture, visual arts and cinema. She has created stage works, installations, exhibitions, concerts, films, publications and laboratories in various contexts (festivals, theatres, public spaces, museums, galleries). Her current preoccupations relate to the performativity of space and its aesthetic, social and political dimensions.

In 2009 Gaudreau initiated her OUT series, which includes a commission for the Festival d’Avignon (2009) and choreographed exhibitions for the Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery (Montreal, 2010) and the M Museum (Leuven, 2012). Out of Mies, an installation and film project about Mies van der Rohe, premiered at the Architectural Association in London in March 2014.

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VIEWPOINTS

Introduction

As OUT of SIGHT delivers a narrative and viewing experience that invites reflection on the margins of production, this document collects viewpoints from some of the project’s collaborators who offer thoughts on the state of being and thinking out, the use of light to expose, hide or disguise the gallery, the boundaries between the viewer and performer, altered states and imagined spaces, and the prolongation of images.

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Lynda Gaudreau

Choreographer and project creator

Throughout all the creative processes I’ve experienced, I can identify one constant: there is more life in everything that happens prior to the presentation than in what is actually shown. We don’t end up finding the right form, the right response, and these elements remain unshown. What would happen if we presented them anyway? What if we continued to play and experiment, and let the fiction find its own way? Here, it is not so much what is outside that is Out of Sight, but rather that which is entirely present, but that we don’t show and choose to leave out.

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Lucie Bazzo

Lighting

As lighting designer, my primary role is to guide the viewer through the exhibition, but I also sometimes play with the viewer’s perception of the exhibition space. I’ve allowed myself to have some fun in rendering this particular space more playful, as an accompaniment to Lynda and Karina’s proposition. I also found that using household lamps brings another layer of understanding to the performers’ collaborative journey. I wanted to tone down the space, erase some of its whiteness and formal atmosphere, and especially make it a place where viewers would want to linger.


Lighting designer for thirty-years, Lucie Bazzo has collaborated over the course of her career with renowned directors such as Robert Lepage, yet without neglecting the coming generations. She has also lit contemporary dance in Montreal, notably with Lynda Gaudreau, Crystal Pite, Benoît Lachambre, Hélène Blackburn, Sylvain Émard, to name but a few choreographers she has worked with.

Her activities are not limited to the performing arts, she has also collaborated with musicians and videographers, not to mention her capacity to work outside the traditional theatre context.

Lucie Bazzo has also created light installations for the Phénomena festival.

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Karina Iraola

Performer

The guided tour itself immediately evokes a subject that came up during our research on the crucial role of the body and how individuals’ presence can change the state of what we see. One of the questions that emerged during our discussions was: which body is it? Throughout the research period, I was inspired by the concept of the paradoxical body as developed by philosophers José Gil and André Lepecki. For Gil and Lepecki, all people operate within space as creators of fictional spaces, paradoxical spaces marked by the subjectivity of each individual. The paradoxical body is thus a body in transformation, in metamorphosis, erasing itself and disappearing in order to go beyond its own limits. This body experiments with all bodily states, a term used in contemporary dance to express fundamental change, irreversibility, instability and intensified space.


A performer in Montreal’s contemporary dance milieu, Karina Iraola is interested in the migration of images, their survival, and their traces in the body. In her research and creation she frequently employs strategies of citation and sampling, drawing images, gestures and copies from cinema, among other sources. She has trained in contemporary dance with the Ateliers de danse moderne de Montréal, in flamenco in Montreal and Spain, in acting in front of the camera, microphone and theatre with René Gagnon, at Ateliers Danielle Fichaud, Aria in Corsica, as well as École ProMédia. She has danced and collaboration with numerous creators, among them Rae Bowhay, Pierre Lecours, Patricia Iraola, Manon Oligny, David Pressault, Lynda Gaudreau, Brice Noeser, Lara Kramer, for the company Mandala Sitù, Aurélie Pédron, Amélie Rajotte, dramaturge and director Hanna Abd El Nour, Andrée Martin and Thierry Huard. She has also worked for a number of years as a choreographer, dancer and actor as part of the company Le Moulin à Musique who create contemporary music works for young audiences.

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Annie Lebel

Set Design Assistance

Darkness erases space. Darkness creates a perceptual architecture of potentiality, a nonexistent architecture that lives in the imagination.


Annie Lebel is an architect and co-founder of Atelier In Situ, Montréal

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Alexandre St-Onge

Sound Design

To be is not necessarily to be perceived. That which is hidden (like Berkeley’s statement within its negation) inconspicuously resists sociocultural mediocrity by simply existing outside the perception of things. However, rather than merely grasping it, perception transforms its object and thus amplifies the ungraspability of what is perceived as an eternally already-lost origin. The origin becomes what it is: ungraspable. I find that considering that which is out of sight, be it imperceptible things or the ungraspability of origin, becomes an ethical and psychedelic necessity in the sense that nothing is more pragmatically fruitful than focusing on the effects of this transformative and hallucinatory relationship to things, as well as accepting and committing oneself to the ungraspability of all causes.


Alexandre St-Onge is an audio artist, a musician/improviser (bass, voice and electronics) and a sonic performer. Philosophiae doctor (PhD) in art (UQAM, 2015), he is fascinated by creativity as a pragmatic approach to the ungraspable and he has publised over ten solo works including Créatures hermétiques dans mon char bb des otages inaperçus (Grillage Absolu), Cône en tête C Ça KC l’arme chaude de l’ivresse (Grillage Absolu), Nude de chose de même (Le laps), VUEIEN (Errant Bodies Press), Semblances (Avatar), viorupeeeeihean (Oral) and Kasi Naigo (squintfuckerpress) amongst others. He founded squintfuckerpress with Christof Migone and he plays in quite a few bands which released several albums : Et Sans, K.A.N.T.N.A.G.A.N.O., Klaxon Gueule, Pink Saliva, mineminemine, Shalabi Effect, Les esprits frappeurs and undo. As a composer he has worked for interdisciplinary company kondition pluriel, as well as composing for artists such as Marie Brassard, Karine Denault, Lynda Gaudreau, Line Nault, Jérémie Niel, Maryse Poulin and Mariko Tanabe.

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Martin Tétreault

Art Collection

Walking, collecting, connecting. The studio becomes portable, moving from one pawn shop to the next, obsessed with landscape paintings and album covers. Back home, the observation of nature is refined. Doing as little as possible to connect painting and photography. A single visual element is enough. A tracking shot in the mind’s eye juxtaposes the waters of the Saint Lawrence with those of the Aegean Sea. Spaces are tiny and colossal at the same time. Unbeknownst to their authors, various paintings, photographs and films are brought together in one place.


Turntablist, improviser, sound designer and artist, the Montrealer Martin Tétreault realizes sound performances with turntables, either readymade or adapted to his needs. He has participated in numerous festivals and gatherings around sound and media art in Québec and internationally. He is associated with a number of music, dance, poetry, installation and performance projects. He has published more than fifty albums with artists from Québec and abroad. In 2004, at the request of choreographer Lynda Gaudreau, he created a system of musical notation and playing surfaces, which developed into the Turntable Quartet, who have performed and released Points, lignes avec haut-parleurs on the label ORAL. This affinity for dance continues with recent works for Le chant des sirens by Sylvain Émard Danse, and 9, by Hélène Blackburn for Cas public. In 2015, the curator Nicole Gingras published Des disques et un couteau, a monograph documenting his work as an artist.

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EXPLORE

Discontinuity

How the cinematic is, in part, a form that links discontinuous elements and how this process can be extended and choreographed within the gallery space.

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Liveness and the fragmentary

The interlacing of narrative between performance in the gallery and the breaks in the incomplete film.

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Completing the image

The provisional ways images can be linked through video, performance, and display.

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The act of visiting

The roles the visitor takes in free, aleatory viewing, during a guided tour, or in the presence of a performer.

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The gallery as raw material

How the gallery performs itself through the maquette, architectural interventions, lighting, documentation of the production process, and the display of the collection.

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