LA TRACK | THE TRACK
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
A COLLABORATION BETWEEN PIGMENT SAUVAGE — ART & RESIDENCIES (BALTIMORE),
THE INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART BALTIMORE AND GALERIE B-312
LA TRACK | THE TRACK
ARTISTS | MONTREAL
Natacha Clitandre completed in 2000 a BFA in visual arts from UQAM and Concordia University. She then studied graphic design at UQAM's School of Design. In 2007m she completed a Master's degree in Aesthetics, Practice, Contemporary Art History and Contemporary Art Practice at Université Paris 8 and the École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs. Through her work, she is particularly interested in mobile diffusion devices, in the link established between the artist and the public through graphics and video supports inserted into various of everyday life.
Carolyne Scenna's work takes many forms : photography, lo-fi video, installations and various objects. She's a multidisciplinary artist who lives and works in Montreal. She holds a master's degree in visual and media arts from UQAM (2017). Her work has been presented at Les Territoires (2015), Parisian Laundry (2016), Galerie de l'UQAM (2017), Centre Clark (2019), Maison de la culture Plateau Mont-Royal (2019) and soon, with artist Isabelle Guimond, at SKOL (2021).
Resolutely independent multidisciplinary artist Joël Vaudreuil lives and works in Montreal. He's currently directing his first animated feature film Adam change lentement (ParceQue Films, 2021), In addition to directing numerous music videos, he also has made several animated shorts including La vie magnifique sous l'eau (2015), Le courant faible de la rivière (Prix Jutra, 2013), L'enfant aux 6 hot-dogs (2011), Un Vortex dans face (nominated for a Jutra, 2010), La récréation du midi (2009). His distinctive style gas earned hm many mentions including a retrospective at the Cinémathèque Québécoise (2017).
Filles Debouttes !
Isabelle Guimond, Gabrielle Lajoie-Bergeron and Christine Major
Created in 2015 the collective exhibited at the artist-run centre L'Écart. It was also part of the same centre's programming for the 2015 residency program. The collective participated in the think tank Vivre avec... organized by Monique Régimbald-Zeiber and Martine Delvaux. Filles Debouttes ! manipulates images to highlight the aberrations of the world around us. Their pictorial proposals address notions of domination - social, economic, sexual, media - articulated with those of survival and borders. They create fictions exalting the singularities of our collective identity through paintings, drawings, sculptures and engaged installations.
Gabriel Favreau takes his first steps in theatre in La Promesse de l'Aube by Romain Gary (producer André Melançon, Espace GO, 2006). He then worked mainly in dubling before beginning at the National Theatre School of Canada, which he completed in 2017. He has appeared In Fur Wrapped (Fringe, 2015) which he co-writes and directs. He also appeared in Mathieu Héroux's Bras de Fer (Théâtre de la Roulotte, 2017) among others. In his practice, Favreau is primarily interested in the notion of acting and the fundamentally theatrical exercise of cross-dressing. He tends to cloud any attempt to rationalize, scrambling the artistic elements of performance so they can manifest in a new, surprising light.
Helena Martin Franco was born in Cartagena, Colombia. She has been living and working in Montreal since 1998. Holder of a graduate degree in visual and media arts from Université du Québec à Montréal, she is a member of numerous visual arts collectives including L'Araignée, based in Quebec. In her work, Martin Franco attempts to build bridges between a diversity of collectives and cultural organizations in Canada and Colombia in order to facilitate the confluence and exchange of artistic practices. Taking autobiographical fictions as starting point, it reveals the permeability of the borders separating cultural, national and gender identities by opposing action, image and text.
Jean-Michel Leclerc works with the notions of memory, presence and the invisible through sculpture, drawing and printmaking. His work acts as a space for exploring and shaping memory and the invisible by the simplest means possible. Diverse events and archives fragments are all erased and latent tracks; carrying within them the possibility of reappearing through works and research projects. He's laureate of the Simon and Sylvie Blais Prize (2017) as well as the Albert-Dumouchel Prize and the BMO 1st works! competition for Qubec (2012). His work can be found in several private and corporate collections including the BMO Art Collection.
Pascale Théorêt-Groulx's practice in video, sound, performance and installation focuses on the modalities that govern the interactions between human beings and their environment. Native from Gatineau (Quebec, Canada) she holds a Bachelor's degree in Arts — Major in Visual Arts and a minor in Comics — from the University of Quebec in Outaouais (2010). In 2014, she completed a Masters in Media Art at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. She received a Joseph-Armand-Bombardier Graduate Scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Théorêt-Groulx has been artist-in-residence at the Banff Center in Alberta and the DAÏMON artist-run centre in Gatineau. Her work has been presented in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia. She is currently a resident artist at the Montreal studios of the Darling Foundry.
ARTISTS | BALTIMORE
Amber Eve Anderson is a multidisciplinary artist and writer whose work is rooted in notions of home and travel often combining aspects of the digital and the real. She holds an MFA from a multidisciplinary program from the Mount Royal of Art at the Maryland Institute of Contemporary Art (2016). Her work as been shown in numerous group exhibitions in the United States, Canada, Finland, Morocco and Peru. Her book Free to a Good Home was published by the New York Public Library and is sold in Printed Matter. She currently serves on the advisory board of the Institute of Contemporary Art Baltimore and is a regular contributor to BmoreArt Magazine.
Erick Antonio Benitez is a Salvadorian-American multidisciplinary artist, musician, project director and curator based in Baltimore. He holds a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Benitez is also the recipient of the Ruby Artist Project 2016 grant, the Contemporary Grit Fund 2 and the Y.L. Hoi Memorial Award. His work is part of private collections in the Central Altlantic region and abroad. In 2018, Benitez received the MASB Travel Artist Award and the Janet and Walter Sondheim Award. He also participated in the Studio's residency at MASS MoCA and Benitez was recently commissioned by the Baltimore Light City Festival as a curator.
Hannah Brancato is an artist and art educator based in Baltimore. In 2011, she graduated from Maryland Institute of Contemporary Art in community art. Brancato began working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence in 2008 when she also recognized her own experience as a survivor. She created Advocate Through Art at the House of Ruth Maryland, an awareness camaign by and for victims of domestic violence. She is the co-founder of FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture an art collective and organization making creative interventions to disrupt rape culture.
Ada Pinkston is a multimedia artist, educator and organizer who lives and works in Washington DC as a Halcyon Arts Lab grant recipient. Born in New York City, Pinkston's research interests span the social sciences, American studies and socially engaged community art pratices. Over the years, her work has been presented in a variety of venues including the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Walters Art Museum, the Peale Museum, the Transmodern Performance Festival, the New Museum, the Baltimore Light City Festival and the streets of Berlin. In 2016, she was a semi-finalist for the Baker Artist Award.
Lu Zhang is a multidisciplinary researcher, curator and artist working in installation, sculpture, drawing and text often in response to a chosen location. Zhang takes specific places and contexts as her starting point. Recognizing the processes and the population (current and past), she adapts her methods to respond to and temporarily inhabit a place. Zhang is the founder of the Institute for Expanded Research an artist-run project that supports artist-led research initiatives and facilitates collaborative partnerships between artists and researchers in all sectors. Lu received her MFA from the Frank Mohr Institute in the Netherlands and her BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore.
Amber Eve Anderson
Things I Don't Remember considers the experience of a tourist and is a reflection on Amber’s first trip to Montreal in 2008. In returning to the city over a decade later, she couldn’t remember anything from having been before, so she went back to her own Facebook archive where she found four photographs she had taken there: the façade of a nondescript building, a pair of red doors with yellow awnings, a selfie with a stick of maple taffy in her mouth, and a caramel latte with whipped cream. Souvenir in French can refer to both a keepsake one might buy as a tourist as well as memory itself. With this in mind, Amber used the first photograph she posted from Montreal in 2008 and enlarged it to the size of 168 postcards. Of these, viewers see only six fragments of the image and are invited to take one from the stacks on display. If a memory is something we remember, what is something we don’t remember?
Erick Antonio Benitez
Portrait of the Living Sky is a multimedia installation focusing on how we interpret and interact with traveling as a means of research, discovery, and stimuli through the lens of a digital-physical perspective. The installation derives from site-specific travel within the locations of Iquitos (Peruvian Amazon), Montreal (Quebec, Canada) & Baltimore (Maryland, US). Within these geographical location, this work examines the sonic landscapes, infrastructure, and relationships to each other and how it’s translation into something of memory, archive, or a physical reminisce . The process of interpreting these locations after traveling through them back to back becomes a cathartic experience of time, space, and growth for the traveler. Portrait of the Living Sky is an experimental ode to this sentiment and experience.
Hannah Brancato is currently working on a series of swiftly made cyanotype prints layered with strands of meticulously embroidered hair, grown over a period of 6 years. Each print is embroidered with an excerpt from her dreams. Dreamscape is an installation and artist book based around the idea that realizing dreams, at times, can tear the people involved apart. Through self-investigation and an invitation for collective reflection, Dreamscape creates space for stories about the struggles and resilience required to build new realities. The installation is comprised of a 6’x7’ hand-stitched panel, created using the methods similar to pojagi, a Korean textile that pre-dates western quilt-making processes, and which is traditionally used to wrap, carry and store things. The panel is assembled from a series of cyanotype prints layered with strands of embroidered hair. The installation is accompanied by a zine created to offer the audience space for their own reflection. This work is part of a larger auto-ethnographic project, in which she is observing and recovering from the effects of burnout, and reflecting on her fraught role as a white person within social justice work. In this body of work overall, she is working to uncover repressed and internalized ideas about whiteness, sexuality, grief, trauma and the connec- tion between the self and the collective.
Inspired by her father’s family, who came all the way from Haiti, spent decades on the move and were disseminated throughout North America, Natacha wanted the Baltimore residency to help her flush out the consequences of delocalization and examine its effects. In order to do so, she tackled the endless ebb an flow between an urge to control and a need to let go that was created by her loss of bearings, and she looked into the physiological and psychological repercussions of her movements in a new urban environment loaded with contrasts. As she was roaming through this Maryland city’s downtown area, she got to experience uprootedness, become homesick and coldly behold her own remoteness. Through methodical analysis of these phenomena, she intended on pinning down the constraints they impose on her creative process and abandoning herself to an artistic ideal. She wanted to live Baltimore from the inside, pit her mixed-race identity against the margins it has been relegated to or the accesses it was granted. She would liked to find what makes her feel estranged from her home and loved ones, and see herself in the Other, lose herself amidst a sea of others. She wished to identify what triggers these variations in impressions, what surrounding information her body perceives and how it translates to sensations. This is how she reclaims her agency.
Les Couleuves—Carolyne Scenna and Joël Vaudreuil
When asked if one should dive or not, Les Couleuves promptly answer with “You can swim alright, but don’t swim too hard!” During their residence, Les Couleuves worked from the anguish of missed opportunities. They produced short animation films and their soundtracks; a art installation where they gather life experiences through drawing, photography, sculpting, sound, animation and video projection. Each of these processes required tools, materials and technical assistance, which they had to find on location. Every day, Les Couleuves used these purposefully induced opportunities to roam around Baltimore and produce an impressionistic documentation of their journey and their findings. Their a priori goal was to fetch something and bring it back to add to the project. A real pathway game, where every decision naturally leads to another, and within which artists tried to reconstruct the inevitably missed moments. By resisting inertia, these shards of sound, image and matter fed their ever-moving exploration, meant to stay open-ended and modular for future propositions.
Filles Debouttes !—Isabelle Guimond, Gabrielle Lajoie-Bergeron and Christine Major
Bordeline relates directly to the creation and research process in the shape of a female road trip which gave birth to the collective. The project peeks into the position of women within cities and hyper-industrialized environments. The project’s title, Borderline, is in reference to a limit state, to chaos at the boundaries and the idea of borders. It also echoes a certain form of stigma relating to personality disorders. This relation with various interpretations of the limit influenced our research. We have seeked to blur the broadened scape of painting using eerie fictions driven by community, territory and the collective psyche. Our most recent studies regarding cities and port industries make our anchoring between Baltimore and Montreal all the more relevant. As an authentic gateway to America for European settlers during the Gilded Age, the Baltimore port is still used for passenger transportation to this day even though its main activity is offering roll-on/roll-off ferry services (vehicle transportation). Here the notion of movement builds up in a very tangible form while setting our imaginaries free by intersecting with aimless wandering. As both flâneuses (wanderers) and reporters, our work method consists of strolling around and foraging while in the field. The simple enjoyment of meandering on the streets has long been considered a masculine activity. Using urban loafing in its feminine mode seems to be a way to explore our subjectivity, give shape to our experiences, make unprecedented discoveries, form alliances, move towards others while integrating this very battle for visibility. The flâneuse is also the vagabond, the vagrant, the migrant, the refugee, the deported, the trekker, the joyful wayfarer. She avoids beaten paths, clears her own land. These explorations, as political as they are critical, touch on notions of marginality, social exclusion and uprootedness.
During his time in Baltimore, Favreau will undertook the first phase of a writing project combining the ideas of theater and healing, looking at the fundamental aspects of performance as a way to reclaim the notions of marginality and exclusion. Through sounds, music, words, he wishes to carve performative experiences whose goal will be to physically explore “strange” territories with the help of living arts, so one can comprehend and integrate the intrinsic link between arcane ritual and artistic performance. Interested in paganism, occult beliefs, forbidden knowledge, and convinced that performance acts as a spiritual catalyst, he seeks to create a form of idiosyncratic theater-ritual; a festive, mystical ceremony, dedicated to fallen friends, to the eerie, to the queer, to the flayed – an ill-concealed pretense to celebrate unicity and dismantle the notions of judgement and punishment
Helena Martin Franco
Her stay in Baltimore led her to revive La planète des seins, a series of drawings that were censored during a group exhibition in Montreal in 2014. In Baltimore, she is considering new coloured skin version drawings, notably because the colonial issues of this territory lead her to think differently. Despite her efforts to complete this new commission, the artist abandoned the project, dissatisfied with the results. She then chose to approach La planète des seins, not through a problem of "representation", but from a new perspective: that of desire, that of coffee. It is precisely coffee that the artist used to create her new watercolours.
As part of his project, Jean-Michel Leclerc carries out his ongoing research on how to shape a history of the mundane using allegories, and on how to offer the new grounds on which history can be reformulated. He used this work period as an excuse to explore the notion of transmission of the memory within the construct of the American collective imaginary. In his three weeks as a resident, he worked on a corpus of drawings, collages and small sculptures. His goal was to build a body of work that not only conjures up the details of the ordinary, but also incarnates in those new objects some archetypes, fragments and specters of Baltimore lore – and, more broadly, early 20th century popular American culture. Inspired by his experience, he presents in Baltimore a serie of prints related on his previous researches.
The transatlantic slave trade brought millions of people across the Atlantic ocean to the Americas. When we think about the triangle that so often is used as a digital representation of the journey that enslaved people went along, we always consider: the United States, the Caribbean, Eastern regions of South America, and Western regions of Africa. However, the northern parts of the Americas are often excluded from the diagrams of the route that people who were enslaved travelled along. The purpose of this project is to consider the ways in which historical memory around the transatlantic slave trade is often misrepresented, misunderstood, and re-contextualized to fit within a framing that is easily digestible.
During her residency in Baltimore, Pascale Théorêt-Groulx collected street bits - concrete, asphalt and bricks. These bits of street saw people walking, running, and some collapsing. They made the news. There, they are also fighting to keep the Bmore club alive, an exalted style of music and dance born in the 1980s that has given thousands of marginalized youth a voice. The artist let herself be lulled by the streets of Baltimore for three weeks and when she returned to Montreal, she wanted more. Jordan Anthony, a young dancer from the Bmore club agreed to collaborate with her remotely and sent her a video especially for the project.
to be to become to come back to die to re-enter to go out to come to arrive to be born to descend to enter to return to fall to remain to go to climb to leave to pass by is the third iteration of House of Being, an ongoing nomadic project exploring memory, language, and meditation as a drawing gesture. This arrangement draws from many sources including the work of Architect and Urban Designer Moshe Safdie, the archives of McGill University and the Canadian Centre for Architecture, and a mnemonic technique called the memory palace. In earlier presentations, House of Being has taken the form of a collaborative artist book and interactive reading installation produced with Cynthia Oyervides; and a photo and text contribution published by Press Press.