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image
Raymonde April, Portrait de groupe
à la Société des plantes
, 2014.
Impression jet d’encre,
76,2 x 114, 3 cm. Avec l'aimable permission de l'artiste.
| Inkjet printing, 76,2 x 114, 3 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Raymonde April, Jessica Auer, Jacques Bellavance, Velibor Božović, Gwynne Fulton, Katie Jung, Jinyoung Kim, Lise Latreille, Celia Perrin Sidarous, Marie-Christine Simard, Bogdan Stoica, Andrea Szilasi, Chih-Chien Wang
From April 14th 2018 to June 16th 2018
Outre-vie/ Afterlife

Opening, Saturday April 14 - 3PM to 6PM

“Afterlife is when one is not yet in life, when one watches it, when one seeks to enter it. She is not dead but already almost living, almost born, perhaps being born, in this passage beyond borders and outside of time which defines desire. Desire for the other, desire for the world. That life may flow as into a swollen waterskin. And one is still far away. Afterlife is like overseas or beyond the grave. One must pass beyond the rigidity of the obvious, of prejudice, of fears, of habits, pass beyond the obtuse real and enter into a reality at once more painful and more pleasant, into the unknown, the secret, the contradictory, open one’s senses and know. Pass beyond the opacity of silence and invent our existences, our loves, where there is no longer destiny of any kind 1”.

Marie Uguay, L’outre-vie, Éditions du Noroît, Montréal, 1979, p. 9.

Outre-vie/ Afterlife was formed by Raymonde April in 2013. The group is made up of thirteen image practitioners whose work aims to develop a concept of afterlife that belongs to the language of images. Taking its name from a work by the late Québec poet Marie Uguay, the group is united by a shared dialogue about storytelling and the vicissitudes of memory. The group has exhibited large-scale photographs, video projections, experimental writing, and sound installations in Québec and abroad. These collective engagements have generated new collaborative modes of production and dissemination, including a practice of archiving their collective art-making process.

The exhibition introduces photographs, videos, texts and archival elements that reflect the collective’s daily activities, including individual works by some of its members.

I imagined forming a group that could collectively map the existence of photographic images—their past and their future. I wanted to create a community that could consider the way images have their own space and their own lives, and how they respond to you when you look at them.

Then India broke this all open. When I went to India for the first time in 2012, for a residency in Mumbai, this project was still living in me but was not yet born, in a sense. I needed to make images just to understand what was going on in Mumbai. When I came back to Montreal, Mumbai was like a surreal fantasy that inhabited me, because no one else around me had been there. I invited more people into the story that was emerging and they had their own affinities. Our practices as image makers began to reflect and expand the concept of afterlife so that it gained new values and meanings. Some members of the group explored geographies that resonated with spectral traces of disappearance. At the same time, others found, in the sculptural forms of objects, ways to observe or distinguish layers of history and memory embedded in the material world. Eventually, more and more members of the group went to India. It’s a biographical thing. It just happened this way.

Our first collective activity was storytelling, which is an exercise in memory. It’s also a way to revisit our archives, which is something that has been important to my practice for a long time now. It was logical, then, that we would create a living archive that continues to multiply and proliferate. Through this collaborative process of montage and juxtaposition, overlooked fragments of memory were recorded and gathered in a shared space, giving rise to unexpected new trajectories. This mode of collective work has allowed us to examine the fluid boundaries of self and other, memory and forgetting, reality and fiction, and continuity and fragmentation in generative ways. It has also had the effect of dulling our individuality as artists while simultaneously preserving it. We share generously as our individual roles become more and more anonymous. The archive is a visual commons that has the power to open up new pasts and to explain or even call into being new futures. In this sense, Afterlife became about developing modes of community through art-making.

From an interview between Gwynne Fulton and Raymonde April for the book Outre-vie/Afterlife, Québec, VU, 2018, p. 6.

1. Translation by Outre-vie/Afterlife

Program

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 - 7 pm
Screening of the video project Our Other Lives from Outre-vie/Afterlife collective
At Cinémathèque québécoise, 335 Boul de Maisonneuve Est, Montreal

Saturday, April 14, 2018 - 3 pm à 6 pm
Book Launch Outre-vie/Afterlife, editor: VU, centre de la diffusion et de la production de la photographie
ISBN 978-921440-30-1
Texts in French and English
At OPTICA

Saturday, May 5, 2018 - 1 pm to 3 pm
Round-table
In the presence of the artists
At OPTICA



PRESS RELEASE (pdf)

PRESS REVIEW

L’HEUREUX, Chantal. « Interview avec Raymonde April», Magazine radio In situ, June 13, 2018.

DELGADO, Jérôme. «Raymonde April et la vie seconde des images», Le Devoir, April 14-15, 2018.



Outre-vie/ Afterlife was formed by Raymonde April in 2013. The group is made up of thirteen image practitioners whose work aims to develop a concept of “afterlife” that belongs to the language of images. Taking its name from a work by the late Québec poet Marie Uguay, the group is united by a shared dialogue about storytelling and the vicissitudes of memory. The group has exhibited large-scale photographs, video projections, experimental writing, and sound installations in Québec and abroad. These collective engagements have generated new collaborative modes of production and dissemination, including a practice of archiving their collective art-making process. Outre-vie/ Afterlife was formed by Raymonde April in 2013. The group is made up of thirteen image practitioners whose work aims to develop a concept of “afterlife” that belongs to the language of images. Taking its name from a work by the late Québec poet Marie Uguay, the group is united by a shared dialogue about storytelling and the vicissitudes of memory. The group has exhibited large-scale photographs, video projections, experimental writing, and sound installations in Québec and abroad. These collective engagements have generated new collaborative modes of production and dissemination, including a practice of archiving their collective art-making process

outrevie-afterlife.art (in construction)

Raymonde April lives and works in Montreal, where she teaches photography at Concordia University. Since the late seventies, she has been known for her minimalist approach of everyday life, between documentary, autobiography and fiction. Her work has been exhibited in Canada and abroad. In 2003, Raymonde April received the Prix Paul Emile Borduas, the highest distinction awarded by the Government of Quebec to a visual artist, and in 2005, her contribution to the development of Canadian photography was recognized by the Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award for Art Photography.

In Raymonde April’s photographs, moments of everyday life are captured and magnified through the formal qualities of the photographic image. Her work happens where she finds herself with the subjects that surround her. Most of her photography was created in black and white, until 1999-2000, when she started to introduce colour and digital photography, writing, film and video, juxtaposing found images from her archives with new ones.

raymondeapril.com

Jessica Auer is a Canadian photographer and visual artist who divides her time between Montreal, Québec and Seydisfjördur, Iceland. Her work is broadly concerned with the study of landscapes as cultural sites focusing on themes that connect history, place, journey and cultural experience. Jessica received her MFA in Studio Arts from Concordia University in 2007. Recent exhibitions include: The Movimenta Biennale, Nice, France 2017; La Quadrilatère, Beauvais, France 2016, Yukon Arts Centre, Whitehorse, Yukon 2016; Patrick Mikhail Gallery, Montreal 2016; Oslo, Norway Basel, Switzerland 2015; and The Gotland Museum of Art, Visby, Sweden 2015. Jessica currently teaches photography at Concordia University

jessicaauer.com

Jacques Bellavance is a Montréal based visual artist who is intrigued by concepts of simulacrum, non-spaces and Virtual Reality. He also uses photography as a means to explore his hybrid cultural identity through an extensive investigation of the city of Shanghai. His photographs draw upon the intertwining of documentary-style and narrative driven self-exploration to unearth aspects of his Chinese heritage. He received an MFA in Studio Arts from Concordia university in 2017. Co-founder of Galerie Éphémère, he’s currently working on an unannounced VR project.

jacquesbellavance.com

Velibor Božović grew up in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina. When he was in his twenties, the country of his youth became a war zone and Velibor spent the duration of the siege of Sarajevo honing his survival skills. In 1999, Božović moved to Montréal where he worked as an engineer in aerospace industry before he devoted his time fully to image creation.

Subsequently, Božović earned MFA degree in Studio Arts at Concordia University. His projects have been supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and by Conseil des arts et des lettres du Quebec. In 2015 he was awarded the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Fellowship in Contemporary Art.

His work has been exhibited in Canada and internationally.

veliborbozovic.com

Gwynne Fulton is an image theorist and practitioner based between Tio'tia:ke (Montréal), in Kanien'kehá:ka territory and Bogotá, Colombia. Her work interrogates the intersection of sovereignty and photography in contemporary necropolitics. She holds an MFA in Cinema and is a PhD candidate in Philosophy, Visual Cultures, and Curatorial Studies at Concordia University. She was a SSHRC Fellow at the Center for Research in Modern European Philosophy at Kingston University (London) and a Fulbright Fellow at Villanova University (Philadelphia). She has published essays on death penalty photography, contemporary painting and installation art and has programmed public screenings about the carceral state and the trajectories of illegalized migration in the Black Mediterranean at Slought Foundation (Philadelphia). Her films have been included in programs at Dazibao, the Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery (Montreal), and the Ann Arbor Film Festival (Ann Arbor).

GwynneFulton

Katie Jung finds no comfort in business-as-usual work efficiency. Instead, she seeks out tedious and time-consuming tasks in an effort to undermine the limitations of conventional practice (and what it can, should, and will produce). Katie is happiest when she is collaborating with materials. This takes different forms: making images, repairing ceramics she spun on the wheel, transcribing conversations, arranging flowers found in the church dumpster, building a tiny-house, or walking with her service dog, Spoons. Through these engagements of continuous making she seeks a present that is different from itself.

Jinyoung Kim translates personal narratives into poetic visions through symbolic and metaphoric visual condensations. Her work resonates with everyday experiences, imbuing them with meaning by appropriating them into different contexts. She is interested in conditions of liminal self-identity and displacement. Kim holds a BFA from OCAD University in Toronto and received her MFA from Concordia University. Her work has been exhibited in Toronto and Montréal, including exhibitions at the Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery, Galerie Lilian Rodriguez, and Espace Cercle Carré. In 2014 Kim was shortlisted for the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Fellowship in Contemporary Art; in 2012 she received the Roloff Beny Foundation Fellowship in Photography. Kim lives and works in Montréal.

jinyoung-kim.com

Lise Latreille is an artist working with photography. Her work explores the poetics of space through looking at the surfaces, materials, and boundaries of public and private places. Latreille was born in 1984 in Shawville, Quebec, and is currently based in Montreal, where she is completing an MFA at Concordia University. Her work has recently been included in exhibitions at FOCUS Photography Festival (Mumbai), Galerie VU (Quebec City), and Galerie La Castiglione (Montreal).

lise-latreille

Celia Perrin Sidarous holds an MFA from Concordia University with a concentration in Photography. Her work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions at Arsenal Contemporary, New York; 8-11, Toronto; Parisian Laundry, Montréal; Esker Foundation, Calgary; Campbell House Museum, Toronto; Dunlop Art Gallery, Regina; The Banff Centre, Banff; WWTWO, Montréal; VU, Québec City; Gallery 44, Toronto; and was featured in the Biennale de Montréal 2016 – Le Grand Balcon. She is the recipient of the 2017 Prix Pierre-Ayot and of the 2011 Barbara Spohr Memorial Award. Her works are part of several private and public collections, including the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal. She lives and works in Montréal.

Marie-Christine Simard lives and works in Montreal. Her work has been presented in several group shows in Quebec (Dazibao, Vu, Vox, Séquence) and Canada (AceArt, Richmond Art Gallery, AKA). She holds an MFA from Concordia University where she has been teaching since 1995. Her work stems from observations of nature and the everyday. In her recent video work titled Gagnon, a man revisits the landscape of his childhood where nature has reclaimed an abandoned mining town in Northern Quebec. It is in the spirit of a photographic series, Héros, presented at Les Territoires in 2010, that explores representations of unexpected heroic figures.

Bogdan Stoica is a Canadian artist, Filmmaker and Director of photography. He holds a bachelor's degree in cinema and photography, and a master's degree in studio arts. Using photography, sculpture and cinema, his artistic work focuses on the boundaries between documentation and fictionalization and is particularly interested in questions of ethics, sharing and the encounter with the other and oneself. His works are exhibited in Canada and abroad, and are highlighted and promoted through institutional and government scholarships. His first feature documentary, Omni: An Act Against Gravity (2018), will have its World Premiere at the renowned HotDocs Film Festival.

Andrea Szilasi lives and works in Montreal. She holds an MFA in Studio Arts (Photography) from Concordia University (2016), a BFA in Studio Arts (Painting and Drawing) from Concordia University (1991), and a BA in Film Studies and French Language and Literature from the University of Toronto (1988). Andrea Szilasi is a photo-based artist whose work examines the representation of the human body in the photographic medium.

Since 1994, her work has been presented in many solo and group exhibitions across Canada, the United States, Mexico, Europe and India.

Andrea Szilasi’s work is included in several public and private collections including those of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the National Gallery of Canada, the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, the Laurentian Bank of Canada, Cirque du Soleil, and Loto-Québec.

andreaszilasi.com (coming soon)

Chih-Chien Wang was born in Taiwan and has resided in Montreal since 2002, where he obtained a MFA degree at Concordia University. His recent solo exhibitions could be seen at gallery PFOAC in Montreal (2017), Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin (2016), Art Gallery of Mississauga (2015), Darling Foundry in Montreal (2015), Expression in Saint-Hyacinthe (2014), Musée régional de Rimouski (2013) and Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (2012), and group exhibitions at Jack Shainman Gallery in New York, Quebec Triennial at Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, National Gallery of Canada, Zenith Gallery in Beijing, Aperture in New York, Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne Switzerland. The Canada Council for the Arts awarded Chih-Chien Wang 2017 Duke and Duchess of York Prize in photography.

chihchienwang.com