May 15 to june 1, 2019
Opening: Saturday May 18, from 2-5 pm
Myriam Coulombe- Pontbriand
Despite some postmodernist discourses that perceive the contemporary world in terms of the rupture and shattering of identity, Myriam Coulombe-Pontbriand proposes on the contrary to magnify popular culture as a beacon of an original way of life that we have inherited.
Exploiting carefully chosen folk traditions and common references, the artist invites us to recognize the shifting basis of our collective identity. Portraits of women from different time periods provoke a nostalgic sense of belonging. They are added to outdated canvasses along with recycled materials and coated in resin.
The public is made to question the present and the past through a series of stories, events, and meetings. Contemporary symbols are added to the works in sometimes subversive ways, evoking certain approaches reminiscent of Pop Art.
Pop culture is framed by the artist as a source of common ground in a world of identity uncertainty, an attic of fleeting references that can still be unifying and meaningful.
Born in Sherbrooke, Québec, Myriam Coulombe-Pontbriand lives and works in Montréal. In 1998, she undertook studies in visual arts and in health care at the Université de Sherbrooke. In 2001, she was a finalist for her work “L’Envers” (The Upside) and participated in a first collective exhibit at the Horace gallery.
Her academic excellence and civil engagement earn her several awards, including the Lieutenant Governor’s Prize. In 2002, the artist received the honorific title of Emissary of the Université de Sherbrooke. Since then, she has participated in several artistic endeavours. At Galerie Luz, she is showing her first solo exhibition entitled “Retro-nostalgia”.
The artist, Josée Charbonneau, recent photographic experimentation has culminated in a signatory exploration of the potential for abstract colourism, aesthetic beauty and the covergence of both organic and urban compenency.
Traditional employment of printmaking techniques have lent the artist a visceral employment of material processes and a visual dexterity which affords her creations with minitiae while her own creative impetus adheres to innate evocations that transpose upon the objects of her focal research in creation.
With “Odyssey”, we witness an exhibition as much a return as a departure, an aesthetic sojourn which demarcates her emphasis upon the question of beauty amid the mundane tedium of life and predominant conceptualism and theoretical pretexts of contemporary visual practices.
In effect, she has initiated an enquiry into the vernacular and non-thinking reflexive discourse of the individual amid a Debordian “Society du Spectacle “, an inverse visual allegorical tale with distinct chapters embodied in singular, unique and visually distinct imagery.
Original imagery, reminscient of the lyrical abstraction achieved by Andre Kertesz in the past century, are unadulterated and without alteration, with a latter transfiguration of leitmotif rendered possible as the objective of a painterly experiment remains in her artistic conscience. Vibrant colourism and composition emanate with a visceral abstraction, the tiered processes of Odyssey demarcating that the essential of dynamic tension inherent in visual adventure echo’s with the individual frame and context of each successive phase.
To paint with a lens appears a paradoxical recourse for an expert of graphic composition and the infinite precision required by the field of print art, yet, bold evocations of the intrinsic beauty of life, the importance of experiment and courage of departure towards an unknown, are well delineated in the large format representations presented, the fruit of a labour wherein the artist crossed a river by feeling the stones at the riverbed.
Josée Charbonneau completed her studies from the Cégep du Vieux Montréal in 1976 with a Degree in Graphic Design. In 2007, she became a full member of the Atelier Circulaire printmaking collective. Her main aspiration lies in the transposition of the figurative representation to images imbued with colourism and non-symbolic compositions.
Personal Exhibitions (Montreal): Galerie Luz, Montreal, 2018, 2015. Collective Exhibitions: Maison Albert Bruneau, Quebec 2018, -(Montreal) Circular Gallery, 2018-2008, Houses of Culture Saint-Antoine sur Richelieu 2017 and Parc- Extension Gallery Luz 2017, 2016, 2014, Galerie du Viaduc, 2016, Collège du Vieux-Montréal 2008. Her prints were acquired by private and public collectors, the Bank National Library of Canada, Gabrielle Roy Library of Quebec and the National Archives of Quebec.