2016 Jeanne-Mance Street/Quartier des Spectacles, Montreal.
The hand binds and narrates from one platform to another, an allegory of the world of entertainment in which actors and artists of different ages gather. Hand gestures appear in a variety of representational registers, through direct modeling, schematization or digital machining.
The extra and the director: The nude figure of an extra cast in bronze climbs on a chair placed on the edge of the platform while the director, sits on a chair on the neighboring platform. The space is animated by the psychological force of their precise gestures. The gesture of the director is imperative and embodies her concentration on her art, on the other hand the extra is tentative which reflects his precarious situation. The representation of the naked actor without irony or pomp sets him apart from the canons of beauty of classical art. In contrast, the woman is dressed with theatrical severity.
Cadence: The shape of the hand, repeated at different scales in this work, was developed from a child’s simple cutting game and subsequently modeled in 3-D for laser cutting in industry. Although the final piece is much larger than the original and made from aluminum plate, it retains the lightness of cardboard cut with scissors and evokes the fluidity of hand movements in space.
The procession: A large effigy is carried by a group of children. Evoking the popular holiday processions of yesteryear, the effigy is alternately a celebrated hero carried by a jubilant crowd, or a fallen tyrant displayed like a trophy. The effigy is developed from a model constructed like a garment made up of hundreds of pieces of cardboard transposed in Corten steel for the final work. The children, for their part, are modeled in wax and then cast in bronze.
The intimate theatre: A stainless steel structure resting on the platform takes on the function of a plinth that supports the giant shapes of two pairs of hands. The spectator who enters the structure realizes that the shapes of the hands are really shells that reveal inside all the details of children’s hands translated on a larger scale or from a different point of view, the works are moulds of hands. The hands are pierced with several openings that let natural light penetrate in an array of beams into this mysterious inner space.
Balancing Act: The work depicts a young girl balancing herself on one hand on the end of an aluminum pole. Both playful and athletic, her movement changes according the viewers position and thereby suggests contemporary dance. Her legs and her free arm seem to be pointing all of the other works. Although she is dressed differently; he viewer will realize that she is the director turned on a ninety-degree axis. Texts : Stephen Schofield
Photos © Guy l’Heureux