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Delphine Larose

ART & POWER — Reading the collection through civic engagement

ART & POWER Reading the collection through civic engagement

October – December 2018

MONTREAL : This fall, Arsenal Contemporary Montreal explores the concept of power through a new presentation of its collection. The selection of primarily recent works alludes to a decadent world with increasingly visible limits – daily violence, terrorist acts, armed conflicts, migrations… Drawing critical force from current news, the artists’ practices allow us to examine the relationships of power, scrutinize human relations and develop new approaches to our collective moment. This selection invites visitors to shift perspectives, adopting new postures towards contemporary life.

The installation is comprised of two large rooms and three multimedia spaces with works expressing their power through a range of formal and conceptual devices. By exploring the historical, political, sociological, and cultural aspects of our society, the artists raise issues worthy of our collective and personal reflection. Ultimately, the selection of works by local, national and international artists encourages awareness and attunes us to the many influences and forms of authority directing our gaze.

Above : Amalia Ulman, Privilege 3/3/2016, 2016 (Courtesy of the artist & Arcadia Missa)

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Fall 2018 : TD Cultural Tuesdays x Danse Danse

Fall 2018 : TD Cultural Tuesdays x Danse Danse

Montreal, September 19, 2018


MONTREAL : Arsenal Art Contemporary, in collaboration with Danse Danse and TD Bank Group, announces the return of TD Cultural Tuesdays for the fall 2018, with a Focus : Dance & Creative Research. Composed of three residencies, each coupled with a TD Cultural Tuesday event, this special season aims to offer a unique look on the dance creative process.

Since 2015, Arsenal Art Contemporary allows you to discover local talents by creating partnerships with various artistic and cultural organizations. This fall, we are pleased to reiterate our partnership with Danse Danse to offer you an eclectic and eloquent experience of choreographic art. The program will be punctuated by artistic residencies by Tentacle Tribe, La Otra Orilla + guest artist for OFF-CINARS and Kim-Sanh Châu, who will occupy our space to further develop and present their explorations.  Is the body, in a perpetual quest of spatial understanding, defined by its dynamism or by its static outline? The relationship of a body – a being – to its environment must be tirelessly questioned, and that is what the artists of Danse Danse aim to do this fall at Arsenal Art Contemporary.

Founded in 1998, Danse Danse is involved in the development and diffusion of contemporary dance by local and international artists. For this 21st season, the distributor uses our collective memories to weave the narrative of its performances and look in a progressive way at political and identity matters that shape our humanity and our quests for meaning. By promoting synergies between disciplines, the creation proposed by Danse Danse combines visual arts, theater and music to physicality in order to present unique and diversified works. By letting themselves be inspired by the uniqueness of Arsenal Art Contemporary, the dancers and choreographers will be creating a transdisciplinary exchange with the public.



September 24 to October 5, 2018 : Residency
October 2, 2018 : TD Cultural Tuesday – Tentacle Tribe

November 10 – 17, 2018 : Residency
November 13, 2018 : TD Cultural Tuesday – OFF-CINARS

December 5 – 18, 2018 :  Residency
December 11, 2018  : TD Cultural Tuesday –  Kim-Sanh Châu

For the price of $10, each Mardi Culturel TD ticket includes a free drink. More details to come.

Arsenal Contemporary would like to thank its partners TD Bank Group and Danse Danse.

Slow Time : Patrick Coutu at Magasin Général

Slow Time: Patrick Coutu at Magasin Général

by Anna Kovler

At the mouth of the St. Lawrence River, near the small community of Rivière-la-Madeleine on the Gaspé Peninsula, Patrick Coutu is working on a series of direct casts of mountains. This is no easy task, as he balances on steep cliffs surrounding a waterfall to adhere the casting material – paper pulp – to the surface. His choice of material evokes the location’s industrial past, once part of the booming network of pulp and paper mills, foundries, textile factories, and aluminum smelters that operated along the St. Lawrence in countless numbers. The Great Eastern Paper Company is long gone from this location, but the rocks of the Appalachian Mountains are still here, fixtures that change at a slower pace than industry and its fickle cycles.

Coutu cast those parts of the rock face where fault lines run like veins through the vast mountain formations, signaling the sudden shifts or long-term erosion, which change the surface of the earth. Like a scar that unmistakably suggests something has occurred, points of cleavage mark a moment of change and reveal the rock’s interior structure. The series of casts connects the mountains with the trees that surround them, and thus geological changes with industrial ones.

Indeed changes in land formations mirror the changes in towns and industries, only at a different time scale. It was 134 years from the time when the first Canadian wood pulp mill was established in Québec in 1866 until the year 2000 when the paper industry entered its sharp decline. The Appalachian Mountains formed about 480 million years ago.

The building where Coutu’s series of casts is on view speaks to yet another shifting landscape. His project is part of a residency at Magasin Général, an international residency program and exhibition space occupying a 19th century building, originally the village’s general store. With the paper mill gone and the town no longer a “boom town,” new kinds of economies emerge, and an outdated business like a general store transforms into an international residency. Retaining the building’s original name is a bit like looking for fault lines in the mountain; we are drawn to know the history of a town and a landscape, and to wear our scars proudly.

Patrick Coutu’s new series and the exhibition “Natural Loci” was produced as part of the residency at Magasin Général Studio International en creation multidisciplinaire in Rivière-la-Madeleine, Québec, and is on view until August 12, 2018.

Upcoming exhibitions for Coutu will take place at at Choi and Lager in Cologne, Germany in December, 2019, and at Musée d’art de Joliette in fall of 2019.

Patrick Coutu, Flux III, Fosse, 2018. Enamel and acrylic on paper.

Patrick Coutu, Flux I, Grand Sault, 2018. Enamel and acrylic on paper.

Patrick Coutu adhering paper pulp to the mountain in Rivière-la-Madeleine on the Gaspé Peninsula, 2018.

Patrick Coutu adhering paper pulp to the mountain in Rivière-la-Madeleine on the Gaspé Peninsula, 2018.

Magasin Général Studio International en creation multidisciplinaire in Rivière-la-Madeleine, Québec.

Archival image of the machine room at the Canada Paper Company in 1894.