Guillaume Adjutor Provost
Accompanied by Portrait #5, a text by Cusiccoyllor Espinoza
Curators—Marthe Carrier and Chloé Grondeau
At the heart of Guillaume Adjutor Provost's practice, there is a desire to reflect on the context of presentation of works within an exhibition space. When the artist presents an installation, he considers that it is not an end in itself, but a place to act and think beyond the works presented there. In this context, the artist becomes a curator. He connects a body of work in a research space open to collaboration, be it artistic, theoretical or critical. In his production, it is more specifically a question of the periphery of what makes history: the counter-culture, the personal archives, the vernacular, the science-fiction and the psychoanalytical approaches.
Originally from Gatineau, Guillaume Adjutor Provost lives and works in Montréal. He completed a PhD in Arts Studies and Practice at Université du Québec à Montréal (2016). Recipient of the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Fellowship in Contemporary Art, he has had a studio at the Darling Foundry since 2016. His work has been shown at exhibitions in Canada, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium and Switzerland. In the summer of 2017, in collaboration with La Chambre Blanche and Vu (Québec), he made a residency in Girona, Catalonia, with the Bolìt art centre. His projects have been presented in Montréal at Galerie Hugues Charbonneau (2018), Diagonale (2017), Centre Clark (2016) and as part of a project with La SERRE - Arts Vivants and Centre Clark (2017).
Guillaume Adjutor Provost's installation is based on the principle of self-management. Conceptualized by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon in the nineteenth century, self-management is a practice that was first developed by the workers' associations of the beginning of the industrial revolution before being annexed to anti-hierarchical denunciations and aspirations for autonomy, which at the dawn of the 1960s, express themselves forcefully in the work fields. Concrete inheritance of May 68, the self-management idea does not touch only the political left; it is also spreading in many circles and is quickly assimilated to collective actions oriented towards and based on the liberation of creativity for all. For artists acting outside of institutions, self-management is a mean, if not an asset, to assert autonomy, both from the point of view of the organization of the collective and the artistic activities that are initiated and exposed. Made up of seven pairs of dyed canvas trousers acting as scenographic props, the installation launches an examination of the personal freedoms deployed by SPVM officers (the Montréal Police Department) during a strike action that ran between 2014 and 2017. While they were denied protest against a law amending the municipal employees' pension plan, police officers decided to change their uniforms by wearing modified trousers. In September 2017, the provincial government passed Bill 133, which stipulated: "Every police officer or special constable shall, in the performance of his duties, wear the uniform and equipment provided by the employer in their entirety, without substituting any element". While racial profiling and police repression are fiercely challenged in a paranoid race for surveillance and control, the desires for self-management and self-determination within a police department obviously convey a troubled message.
CONVERSATIONS MONTRÉAL | LYON
THE ARTISTS – THE VENUES
Philippe Allard – La Factatory
Jean-Pierre Aubé –Tator
Thomas Bégin – Tator
Julie Favreau – La BF15
Isabelle Guimond – Néon
Noémi McComber – Néon
Tricia Middleton – Néon
Guillaume Adjutor Provost – Bikini
Philippe Allard – La Factatory – du 15 mars au 4 avril 2018
Thomas Bégin – La Factatory – du 8 mars au 31 mars 2018
Julie Favreau – Moly Sabata – du 28 février au 31 mars 2018
Tricia Middleton – Néon – du 22 mars au 4 avril 2018
To put it in a nutshell, the Bikini project is: an exhibition space (small, very small), one or two artworks (monokini or bikini), a critical or literary text. The exhibition is presented to the public on the occasion of an opening and by appointment. However due the gallery having a window space (large, very large) The works are visible from the street.
Conversations. Montréal | Lyon was made possible thanks to the Canada Arts Council, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, the Conseil des arts de Montréal and the ministère des Relations internationales et de la Francophonie du Québec / Fonds Émérillon de coopération franco-québécoise and the l'Institut français / Ville de Lyon.