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Contemporary Art, Feminist Theories

Optica, Montreal, 2019.
160 p., 15,8 x 23,18 cm.
ISBN 978-2-922085-15-0
Texts in French and English
35$ or 42.74$ shipping included

Contemporary Art, Feminist Theories

Editors: Marie-Ève Charron, Marie-Josée Lafortune, Thérèse St-Gelais

Authors: Marie-Ève Charron, Philippe Dumaine, Marie-Josée Lafortune, Deirdre Logue, Allyson Mitchell, Wanda Nanibush, Johanne Sloan, Thérèse St-Gelais, Rinaldo Walcott, Giovanna Zapperi

Artists: Sophie Bélair Clément, Rebecca Belmore, Olivia Boudreau, Marie-Claude Bouthillier, Sorel Cohen, Raphaëlle de Groot, Vera Frenkel, Andrea Geyer, Cynthia Girard-Renard, Clara Gutsche, Rashid Johnson, arkadi lavoie lachapelle, Suzy Lake, Maryse Larivière, Emmanuelle Léonard, Abdi Osman, Camal Pirbhai, Claire Savoie, Jana Sterbak, Camille Turner  

Bringing together an important body of work produced between 1970 and the present, this publication analyzes historical and current issues of feminisms by proposing crossed perspectives on the field of art history and its oft-interrogated construction. Feminist manifestations are examined in light of practices that persist in their resistance and that compel us to reexamine social norms through activism, citizen mobilization, and sharing communities. Striving to bring new insights to our attention, these contributions take up theoretical feminist models, but also reference cultural, decolonization, and queer studies.  

Archi-féministes! is the title of the eponymous exhibition presented by contemporary art centre OPTICA in 2011 and 2012, which highlighted the contributions of female artists to its history and to the network of Canadian artist-run centres.

Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France) : Edith Brunette [Ce qui est séparé], Gaëlle Choisne [Grangou], (no4)
OPTICA, Montréal; art3, Valence, 2016.
ISBN: 978-2-922085-14-3
Texts in French
Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France) : Edith Brunette [Ce qui est séparé], Gaëlle Choisne [Grangou], (no4) Artists: Edith Brunette, Gaëlle Choisne

This co-publication presents research projects conducted in 2014 by Gaëlle Choisne in Montréal and Edith Brunette in Valence, both taking part in a joint program of research residencies initiated by the partner organizations, OPTICA and art3.

Choisne is interested in Montréal’s Haitian diaspora. As Montréal is known to house the largest number of Haitians abroad, Choisne thought it the best place to conduct a series of interviews with members of the community while carrying out extensive work in the archives of the Centre International de Documentation et d’Information Haïtienne, Caribéenne et Afro-canadienne (CIDIHCA). The artist presents a book of typical Haitian recipes that she augments with material gleaned from the country’s history.

Edith Brunette, for her part, focuses on the luxury goods industry, the Louis Vuitton and S.T. Dupont corporations in particular, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. Examining the image of itself this industry nurtures in the media and its evolution in the era of outsourced labour and increasingly scarce craftsmanship, the artist establishes some parallels with the contemporary art world and art fairs and shows how the luxury milieu remains “separate” and generally inaccessible. 

48 p, ill. col. 20 x 20,9 cm
Texts: Edith Brunette, Gaëlle Choisne
Graphic Design: Tamzyn Berman - Atelier pastille rose
500 copies
ISBN 978-2-922085-14-3

Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France): Mathieu Latulippe Visions [Documents de recherche], Laurent Pernel, Théâtre de Verdure (no3)
OPTICA, Montréal; art3, Valence, 2014.
ISBN: 978-2-912342-47-8
Texts in French

Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France) :
Mathieu Latulippe Visions [Documents de recherche], Laurent Pernel, Théâtre de Verdure (no3)

Artists: Mathieu Latulippe, Laurent Pernel

This joint publication from OPTICA and art3 follows upon Laurent Pernel’s stay in Montreal (2011) and Mathieu Latulippe’s in Valence (2012) as part of the research residency exchange program created by the two art centres.

This publication benefited from the support of the ministère des Relations internationales, de la Francophonie et du Commerce extérieur du Québec, the Consulat général de France à Québec in the context of the 64ième Commission permanente de coopération franco-québécoise and the Région Rhône-Alpes.

Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France) : Olivia Boudreau, Anne-Lise Seusse (no2)
Optica, Montréal; art3, Valence, 2011.
ISBN: 978-2-922085-13-6
Texts in French

Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal, Valence (France) :
Olivia Boudreau, Anne-Lise Seusse (no2)

Artists : Olivia Boudreau, Anne-Lise Seusse.

This joint publication from OPTICA and art3 follows upon Anne-Lise Seusse’s stay in Montreal (2009) and Olivia Boudreau’s in Valence and Sablons (Moly-Sabata, 2010) as part of the research residency exchange program created by the two art centres. Short excerpts in the form of a illustrated diary trace the development of the artists and their work across the two regions.

This publication benefited from the support of the Ministère des Relations internationales du Québec, Région Rhône-Alpes, and French Consulate in Quebec City.

Mallarmé. Le Livre Compilation

Mallarmé. Le Livre - Compilation
©2009, Klaus Scherübel & Walter König, 2001
©2009, Klaus Scherübel & Printed Matter, 2004
©2009, Klaus Scherübel & Optica & Mudam, 2005
©2009, Klaus Scherübel & MCF-Michèle Didier, 2009

[back order]

Mallarmé. Le Livre - Special Edition

Optica has received a few of the 24 limited edition copies comprising all existing versions of Klaus Scherübel’s «Mallarmé. Le Livre» ; each set is offered with a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist. Collectors, take note!

- Each book measures 24 x 15,8 x 3,6 cm
- Printed cover
- Polystyrene block and plastic film

Limited edition of 24 copies

Produced and published by
Das Buch (Walther König Verlag, 2001) – German
The Book (Printed Matter Inc., 2004) – English
Le Livre (Optica & Mudam, 2005) – French
Het Boek (mfc-michèle didier, 2009) – Dutch

All rights reserved. No part of this edition may be reproduced in any form or by any means.

résidence dupont morin

Résidence de recherche jeune création : David Dupont, Diane Morin
Optica, Montréal; art3, Valence, 2009.
ISBN 978-2-912342-36-2
David Dupont
ISBN 978-2-912342-35-5
Diane Morin
ISBN 978-2-912342-34-8
[18$; European price : 12€]
Texts in French

Résidence de recherche jeune création : David Dupont, Diane Morin

Authors : Marie-Josée Lafortune, André-Louis Paré, Sylvie Vojik.

Forewords : Christine St-Pierre (Minister of Culture, Communications et Condition féminine du Québec), Jean-Jack Queyranne (President of the Conseil Régional Rhône-Alpes, Parliament member for Rhône – Former Minister).

Artists : David Dupont, Diane Morin.

This publication sequels research undertaken by artists David Dupont in Montreal, and Diane Morin in Valence, in the context of a residency and exchange program initiated by art3 and OPTICA.

The Résidence de recherche jeune création Montréal-Valence is a combined residency and grant program for young artists from the Rhône-Alpes region and Quebec. This edition gives an first-hand account of the relationship forged between art3 and OPTICA, focusses the respective practices of the resident artists, and presents a critical perspective on ‘process’ by author André-Louis Paré.

The publication is three-fold : it includes a booklet (with a dialogue between Optica director Marie-Josée Lafortune and Sylvie Vojik of art3, and a text by André-Louis Paré), as well as 2 individual artist's books by David Dupont and Diane Morin.

This project was made possible with the support of partnering institutions, the Ministère de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine du Québec, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, and Région Rhône-Alpes.


La Demeure
Optica, Montréal , 2008.
ISBN 978-2-922085-12-9
[25$; Member price : 22$]
Texts in French

La Demeure

Curator : Marie Fraser.

Authors : Marie Fraser, Constanza Camelo, Marie-Paule Macdonald. Marie-Josée Lafortune (foreword).

Artists : Kim Adams, Michel de Broin, Constanza Camelo, Claudine Cotton, Alexandre David, Marie-Suzanne Désilets, Rachel Echenberg, Marie-Ange Guilleminot, KIT + Artengine = Borderline Developments, Lani Maestro, Shelley Miller, Janet Morton, Daniel Olson, Jean-François Prost, Ana Rewakowicz, Danielle Sauvé, Steve Topping, Mary Sui Yee Wong.

La Demeure presents various perspectives on contemporary issues and practices in the context of a cultural movement whose complexity we barely grasp. Now portable, mobile, and ephemeral, the dwelling is fashioned by its own quest, evincing a desire to inhabit unusual places, to invent ways of life outside the bounds of conventional architecture. Many artists are examining the phenomenon today. The dwelling is no longer merely a sedentary space of withdrawal; on the contrary, it insinuates itself in the interstices between the interior and the exterior, touches both the intimate and social space, everyday household life and the bustle and density of the city. Experienced as a mutable, nomadic space, the dwelling is a means of orienting and situating oneself in space and in the world. These thoughts lead to artistic and cultural concerns, geographic and philosophical preoccupations, that compel us to reassess the notion of home as the foundation of a sense of belonging and identity.

These questions are broached by authors of varied background and interests : Marie Fraser, curator of the exhibition, Marie-Paule MacDonald, theoretician of architecture, and performance artist Constanza Camelo.

La demeure (pdf)

Abus Mutuel

Abus Mutuel :
négocier la survivance
Optica, Montréal , 2005.
ISBN 2-922085-11-2
[22$; Member price : 16$]
Texts in French

Abus Mutuel : négocier la survivance

Editors : François Dion, Marie-Josée Lafortune.

Authors : François Dion, Lori Blondeau, Catherine Grout, Marie-Josée Lafortune, Cuauhtémoc Medina /Francis Alÿs, Jeanne Randolph.

Proceedings of the interdisciplinary and performative conference held on the internet the 16th of November 2002 presented by Optica as part of the artistic season titled “la survivance”. This publication reexamines our relationships with traditional models and avenues of dissemination in the context of globalized markets.  It raises a series of questions on the contemporary art practice, concerning as much its production and presentation as its reception and analysis.  The participating authors comment on their personal  motivations, on environmental pressures, and analyse the conditions for the existence of art through critical activities and initiatives meant to generate new networks and suggest alternatives. The question of abuse being rarely dealt with in art, this publication attempts to show its subversive potential.

Le livre

Mallarmé. Le livre
Optica, Montréal et le Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Luxembourg, 2005.
ISBN 2-922085-10-4


Mallarmé. Le Livre

Artist : Klaus Scherübel.

“Everything in the world exists in order to end up in a book.” -Mallarmé Called simply Le Livre, the project undertaken by the French poet Stéphane Mallarmé (1842-1898) was meant to symbolically encompass all of literature. It was nerver published. With the purpose of rendering Le Livre’s apparently contradictory nature — impossible to produce as a book, but fully realized as a conceptual work — Scherübel produced its “jacket” according directions given by Mallarmé more than a hundred years ago. This edition has all the characteristics of an ordinary book jacket, including an ISBN and a blurb on the back cover; wrapped in white polystyrene, it looks like a book distributed in bookstores and public libraries. The present French version, jointly produced by Optica and the Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean du Luxembourg, follows on the English and German editions (Printed Matter, Inc., New York, 2004; Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne 2001).

Optica, Montréal, 2003.
ISBN 2-922085-09-0
[17$; Member price : 12$]
Texts in French and in English


Author : Nicole Gingras.
Artists : Rachel Echenberg, Mary Kanuk, Manon Labrecque, Heike Mutter, Cathy Sisler, Sandra Sterle.

Breath, vertigo, and falling define distinguishing aesthetics of contemporary video. Showing the body in performance, telling of its vulnerability, imperilling it in an effort to reach irreconcilable thresholds accentuate the problems of balance evinced by slow motion, fast motion, and freeze frames. Can we speak of uses or convergences? The author muddles such tracks by dealing with performance and video not in terms of disciplines, but as an affinity between stories, fields of knowledge, and images —whether one lives in Amsterdam, Cologne, Montreal, or Igoolik.

This publication is the first in a collection entitled VOIX CONTEMPORAINES that takes the form of experimental essays situated midway between criticism, history and reporting, by authors and artists from different backgrounds writing about current art practices.

Gestes d'artistes / Artists' Gestures
Optica, Montréal, 2003.
ISBN 2-922085-08-2
[17$; Member price : 12$]
Texts in French and in English

Gestes d'artistes / Artists' Gestures

Curators / Editors : Marie Fraser, Marie-Josée Lafortune.

Authors : Marie Fraser, Moukhtar Kocache (Director of Visual and Media Arts at the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council), Marie-Josée Lafortune. Interviews with the artists in exhibition : Carl Bouchard & Martin Dufrasne, Rachel Echenberg, Raphaëlle de Groot, Massimo Guerrera, Devora Neumark. This catalogue accompanies the “Artists’ Gestures” exhibition organized by OPTICA, a contemporary art center, which was presented in Montreal from October 7th to 14th 2001 in conjunction with the “Saison du Québec à New York”.

Bringing together texts and interviews with artists in the exhibition, this publication furthers a reflection on the nature of gesture, interrogating its mobility, fragility, transience and motion toward the world. From the self to the other, the gesture travels between two spaces, from the private to the social.
Penser l'indiscipline
Penser l’indiscipline: recherches interdisciplinaires en art contemporain / Creative Confusions : Interdisciplinary Practices in Contemporary Art
Optica, Montréal, 2001.
ISBN 2-922085-06-6
[25$; Member price : 17$]
Texts in French and in English

Penser l’indiscipline : recherches interdisciplinaires en art contemporain / Creative Confusions : Interdisciplinary Practices in Contemporary

Art Editors : Lynn Hughes, Marie-Josée Lafortune.

Authors : Lynne Bell, Joan Borsa, Tim Clark, Curtis J. Collins, Jean Dubois, Guy Sioui Durand, Vera Frenkel, Amy Gogarty, Nicole Jolicoeur, Johanne Lamoureux, Denis Lessard, Patrice Loubier, Mireille Perron, Christine Ross. Lynn Hughes, Marie-Josée Lafortune (foreword).

Creative Con/Fusions : Interdisciplinary Practices in Contemporary Art looks at interdisciplinary theory and practice in contemporary art with a particular, but not an exclusive, focus on contemporary practices in Québec and Canada. The thirteen authors – artists, teachers, curators, theoreticians, and historians – elaborate critical definitions and reflections that are both historical and personal. The importance of performance and video artforms in relation to the emergence of interdisciplinary critical thinking, the contribution of feminist, post-colonial and other theories that address marginality and hybridity, the creation of provocative, inclusive teaching models, the stimulus provided by a host of new technologies, fresh activist art practices, the challenge of independent curating, etc. – these elements all act as release mechanisms for a re-evaluation of the idea of interdisciplinarity as it applies to current practices in and around art.

Fin de siècle
Optica, Montréal, 2000.
ISBN 2-922085-05-8
[17 $; Member price : 12$]
Texts in French and in English

Fin de siècle

Curator : François Dion.

Authors : François Dion, Luis Jacob, Sally McKay.

Artists : Sylvain P. Cousineau, Robin Dupuis, Randall Finnerty, Pierre Fournier, Germaine Koh, Rémi Lacoste, Euan Macdonald, Lucy Pullen, Carmen Ruschiensky, Cathy Sisler. Fin de siècle comprises four thematic exhibitions addressing issues such as self-anxiety, language and order, technology and the sense of community, that reflect a specific time. Produced for Optica’s multidisciplinary room, the exhibitions gathered the recent work of ten artists from Eastern Canada. The series questioned the traditional work of the curator, exhibition practices and the interpretation of artworks, focusing on exchange and collaboration between participants in a project, as well as the different relationships generated by a critical approach of artistic conventions. The publication reflects the spirit of the project in presenting four visual sections linked to the exhibitions themselves in parallel with three complementary texts : an essay, a dialogue and a work of fiction.

Sur l’expérience de la ville
Optica, Montréal, 1999, 180 p., 23x17 cm.
ISBN 2-922085-03-1
[28 $; Member price : 20$]
Texts in French and in English

Sur l’expérience de la ville. Interventions en milieu urbain

Curators : Marie Fraser, Diane Gougeon, Marie Perrault.

Authors : Guy Bellavance, Marie Fraser, Jochen Gerz, Niels Ewerbeck, Mary Jane Jacob, Johanne Lamoureux, Mark Lewis, Marie Perrault, Rita Mc Keough, Michèle Thériault. Marie-Josée Lafortune (foreword).

Artists : Dominique Blain, Robin Collyer, Trevor Gould, Devora Neumark, Lorraine Oades, Anne Ramsden, Robert Saucier, Sites Unseen (Eduardo Aquino, Ricardo Castro, Maxe Fisher, Stephen Horne, Tessa McWatt & Michael Flomen, Ricardo Mendonça), Neil Wiernik.

A critical and thematic book published in conjunction with the exhibition “Sur l’expérience de la ville. Interventions en milieu urbain”, which presented in situ works across the city of Montréal during the fall of 1997. The exhibition and accompanying talks were an opportunity to reflect upon the notion of urban space in an era marked by the end of utopias. Gathering transient and selective works across the city, the project aimed to critically address the socio-political context of Montréal as well as the traditional and monumental role of the artwork within the urban fabric.

Documents et mensonges / Documents & Lies
Optica, Montréal, 1999, 32 p., 27x19 cm.
ISBN 2-922085-04-X
[15$; Member price : 10$]
Texts in French and in English

Documents et mensonges / Documents & Lies

Curator : André Martin.

Authors : Denis Lessard, André Martin.

Artists : Douglas Gordon, Mathew Jones, Cornelia Parker, Steven Moore.

The catalogue Documents & Lies surveys the work presented in the gallery space in terms of how they point towards certain photographic notions without ever actually using the medium, thus constituting a lexicon of sorts of photography.

(Be) Longing

(Be) Longing
Optica, Montréal, 1998, 30 p.
ISBN 2-922085-02-3
[5$; Member price : 3$]
Texts in French and in English

(Be) Longing

Curator : Mary Sui Yee Wong.

Authors : Mary Sui Yee Wong, Karlyn Y-Mae Koh.

Artists : Yau Ching, Laiwan, Ellen Pau,Xiu Li Young.

Wong explains her choice of four women artists in function of their marginality (in terms of sexual orientation and ethnicity) and of their shared sensibilities to materials and forms. Includes a poetic narrative addressed by Koh to her grandmother, dealing with themes of home and identity, absence/emptiness, and protection – complemented by descriptions of the exhibited works, including short artists’ statements. Brief biographical notes on artists and authors.


Comment aider les animaux à s’échapper des habitats dégradés / How to Help Animals Escape from Degraded Habitats
Optica, Montréal, 1997, 40 p., 15 ill., 18x13 cm.
[15$; Member price : 10$]
Texts in French and in English

Comment aider les animaux à s’échapper des habitats dégradés / How to Help Animals Escape from Degraded Habitats

Artist : Bill Burns.

Burns has designed this booklet as a guide concerned with ecological issues, including practical tips and a five-step program (DRIVE : Discover, Retrieve, Innovate, Verify and Endow) – all rendered in a playful tone.

Montréal Zoo de Montréal. Guide illustré des habitats pour animaux de Montréal / Illustrated guide to animal habitats in Montréal
Optica, Montréal, 1997, 71 p., ill., 18x13 cm. ISBN 2-922085-00-7
[15$; Member price : 10$]
Texts in French and in English

Montréal Zoo de Montréal. Guide illustré des habitats pour animaux de Montréal / Illustrated guide to animal habitats in Montréal

Artist : Trevor Gould.

Presenting his artist’s book as a field guide, Gould actually documents a 1947 project for the city of Montreal which never materialized – namely, a zoological garden and aquarium intended to group fauna and flora within five typical habitats. Includes reproductions of 64 watercolor illustrations by the artist and a map.

Manuel d’animal Handbook
Optica, Montréal, 1997, 10p., 12 ill.,18x13 cm.
ISBN 2-922085-01-5
[15 $; Member price : 10$]

Manuel d’animal Handbook

Artist : Mark Vatnsdal

In this booklet, Mark Vatnsdal proposes an anthropomorphic (visual) description of the animal world.


La vie des animaux vivant dans l’ombre du XXIe siècle
(3 livres d’artistes)
[30,00 $/3]

Ensemble de livres d’artistes : La vie des animaux vivant dans l’ombre du XXIe siècle

Comment aider les animaux à s’échapper des habitats dégradés / How to Help Animals Escape from Degraded Habitats – Bill Burns

Montréal Zoo de Montréal. Guide illustré des habitats pour animaux de Montréal / Illustrated guide to animal habitats in Montréal – Trevor Gould

Manuel d’animal Handbook – Mark Vatnsdal

On the Way Between / Na Drodze Pomiedzy
Optica, Montréal; Wydawca-Fundaja Wyzwolenia Kultury, Cracovie, Pologne; 1997, 32 p.,
13 ill., 21x15 cm.
ISBN 83-901799-7-0
[5$; Member price : 3$]
Texte en anglais et en polonais

On the Way Between / Na Drodze Pomiedzy

Author : Maria Anna Potocka.

Using black silhouettes on a white ground, Potocka creates a kind of pantomime where the characters’ gestures are juxtaposed with text concerned with the difficulty of describing and communicating with others.

There was and There was not (Kan ya ma Kan)
Optica, Montréal, 1996, [16] p. : 8 ill. ; 22x15 cm.
[Feuillet gratuit]
Texts in French and in English

There was and There was not (Kan ya ma Kan)

Artist : Jayce Salloum.

Authors : François Dion, Walid Ra'ad.

Ra'ad shows how Salloum's installation multiplies formal, political, and social relationships within objects collected during a sojourn in Lebanon in 1992-1993. In an interview with Dion, the artist comments on his working process and the importance of the “conceptualization of the perceived political and social exigency.”

There was and There was not (Kan ya ma Kan) (version pdf)

Other Real Stories / D’autres fictions
Harbour Magazine & Optica, Montréal, 1995. Dépliant, [12] p. : 14 ill. ; 23 x 16 cm.
ISBN 2-9800981-7-5
[Feuillet gratuit]
Texts in French and in English

Other Real Stories / D’autres fictions

Curators : Stephen Horne, Marie-Josée Lafortune.

Artists : Eduardo Aquino, Josée Bernard, Andrew Carlisle, Michael Fernandes, Nelson Henricks, André Martin, Rita McKeough, Mary Sui Yee Wong.

Horne and Lafortune describe how eight Canadian artists became involved in creating narratives through photographs and texts which were published in local Scottish papers, The Scotsman and The Scotland On Sunday, for the duration of FOTOFEIS, an international photography festival held in Edinburgh. The works appeared in eight consecutive editions during the month of October 1995.

Optica, Montréal; Susan Hobbs Gallery, Toronto; 1995, 90 p., 26 ill. noir et blanc., 1 ill. couleur, 23x14 cm.
ISBN 2-9800981-83
Texts in French and in English

Mouvance : A Book on the Work of Ian Carr-Harris

Authors : Jeanne Randolph, Jérôme Sans.

Artist : Ian Carr-Harris.

Quoting Freud et Marcuse, Randolph meditates on the insidious effects of occidental civilization; Sans analyses Carr-Harris’s installations in terms of space and fragment.

Le bénéfice du doute (Les cahiers des regards)
Optica, Montréal; Centre d’art Contemporain d’Herblay, France; coll. Les Cahiers des Regards, 1993, 70 p., 17 ill., 24x16 cm.
ISSN 0990-7823.
[15 $; Member price : 10$]
Texts in French, en anglais et en néerlandais

Le bénéfice du doute (Les cahiers des regards)

Curators : Diane Gougeon, Annie Molin Vasseur, Alain Reinaudo.

Authors : Catherine Bédard, Ijsbrand Van Veelen.

Artists : Jean-Sylvain Bieth, Corinne Corry, Erwin Driessens & Maria Verstappen, Nicole Jolicoeur, Denis Lessard, Claude Lévêque, Lani Maestro, André Martin, Andreï Roiter, Lydia Schouten, Pierre Jean Serres, Nell Tenhaaf.

Paralleling the work of art and the shield, Bédard discusses contemporary art and its relationship to the world. Van Veelen (text in Dutch and French only) questions the role of art in a hyper-mediated world and criticises trends leading to fascism and local particularism within the context of the European Unification. The works of 13 artists from Québec and Europe are presented. Includes an excerpt from a text by Baudrillard and artists’ statements.

Le projet Abattoir
Knight, Derek, Optica, Montréal, 1993, 66 p., 51 ill.(1 coul./col.), 28x22 cm.
ISBN 0969733801.
Textes en anglais et en français

Le projet Abattoir : Interventions in situ /site-specific interventions, 1991-1993

Author : Derek Knight.

Artist : Franc Petric.

Derek Knight documents the three phases of Petric’s intervention concerning the slaughterhouse of the Montréal stockyards as an effort to reclaim the site’s history. Earlier activist works concerning the natural order and the slaughterhouse as memorial are also discussed.
Optica, Montréal, 1993, 2 p., bibliographie de l’artiste.
Texts in French and in English/ Texts in French and English


Author : Derek Knight.

Published in the context of the exhibition and explaining the artist’s project.

Décades 1972-1992
Optica, Montréal, 1992, 24 p., 51 ill., 28x22 cm.
Texts in French and in English

Décades 1972-1992

Author : Christine Ross.

Documentation of all the exhibitions and events organised and presented by Optica between 1972 and 1992. Includes an index of artists participating in Optica's programming.

La photographie en tant que document vulgaire / Towards the photograph as a vulgar document
Optica, Montréal, 1992, 72 p., 49 ill.,28x22 cm
ISBN 2-9800981-5-9.
Texts in French and in English

La photographie en tant que document vulgaire / Towards the photograph as a vulgar document

Authors : Martha Braun, Guy Bellavance, Régis Durand, Reesa Greeberg, Jeanne Randolph, Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Philippe Dubois, Lorne Falk.

Artists : Raymonde April, Charles Guilbert, Bob Burley, Tim Clark, Eileen Cowin, Lee Friedlander, Michel Gaboury, Suzy Lake, Lucie Lefebvre, George Legrady, Sherrie Levine, Laurie Simmons, Mitra Tabrizian, Andy Golding, Mark Lewis.

Originally presented at a Symposium held in 1988 in conjunction with an exhibition marking Optica’s 15th anniversary, seven critical essays address “marginalized” aspects of photographic activity and explore issues including: the ethos of technology and the act of interpretation; fetishism and 19th century photography of the female nude; the discursive condition of the documentary; subject/object relationships; and photographic theory and criticism. Includes visual documentation of the 12 exhibited works and biographical notes on authors. Untranslated texts with bilingual abstracts.

Empirical Presence :
Six Essays

Optica, Montréal, 1992, 46 p., 6 ill. coul./col., paperback.
ISBN 2-9800981-3-2
Texts en English

Empirical Presence : Six Essays

Authors : James D. Campbell, Yvonne Lammerich.

Artists : Barbara Caruso, Jean-Marie Delavalle, Yves Gaucher, Ron Martin, Jaan Poldaas, Henry Saxe.

In a series of discrete essays on the abstract artists (four painters and two sculptors) in the exhibition, Campbell delves deeply into the form of the artist’s work to arrive at its context, or at an interpretation of its internal dynamic and a theory of corresponding meaning. Using Lacan, Wittgenstein and Merleau-Ponty as points of departure, the author incorporates discussions of subjectivity, the body, and the phenomenology of vision, sensation and mood (melancholy).

Hanna Luczak : Inside Mount Kilimanjaro

Optica, Montréal, 1991, 9 p., 7 ill., 28x22 cm.

ISBN 2-9800981-1-6
Édition limitée/Limited Edition
Texts in French and in English

Hanna Luczak : Inside Mount Kilimanjaro

Authors : Trevor Gould, Francesca Penserini.

Artist : Hanna Lucza.

Gould emphasizes the interdisciplinary nature of Luczak’s installations which incorporate drawing and site-specific sculptural elements.



Optica, Montréal, 1990. 18 p., 11 ill., 23x23 cm.
[3 $; Member price : 2$]
Texts in French and in English


Authors : Juan L. Gomez-Perales, Christine Ross.

Artists : Josh Garber, Gordon Laird, Miguel Angel Berlanga, Bernard Rousseau, Pierre Fournier, Michelle Normoyle.

Catalogue from a series of three exhibitions exploring the process of art making, as well as the process of exhibiting. Contains documentation and writing by each artist.

S’étourdir de paroles

Optica, 1990, Montréal, 1 dépliant (16 p., 9 ill., 24x11 cm.) + 1 cassette sonore (5 min. 30 sec.) + 10 cartes postales (9 ill.) + 1 boîtier/case (12x24x2 cm).
Textes en anglais

S’étourdir de paroles

Author : Robert Milliken.

Artist : Paul Landon.

Milliken describes Landon’s site-specific audio installation, with references to the theory of communication and the artist’s fragmentary use of Jorge Luis Borges’ texts.

The zone of conventional practice and other real stories / À propos de conventions et autres fictions

Optica, Montréal, 1989, 240 p., 110 ill. (70 coul.), 22x19 cm.
ISBN 0-9692021-1-3.
[22$ ; Member price : 15$]
Texts in French and in English

The zone of conventional practice and other real stories / À propos de conventions et autres fictions

Curator / Editor : Cheryl Simon.

Authors : Serge Bérard, Jean-Pierre Denis, David Hlynsky, Liza McCoy, Cheryl Simon, Peter Wolheim.

Through diverse writing strategies, six critics question the history, meaning and social relations of photography and unravel concepts of veracity, viewing and the relation to language. Includes photographics projects by 14 Canadian artists.

Table-Tableau-Toile, la demeure et l’exil

Optica, Montréal, 1987, 16 p. (9 ill.), 28x22 cm.
ISBN 3-9800981-0-8.
Texts in French and in English

Table-Tableau -Toile, la demeure et l’exil

Authors : Michel Denée, Yvonne Lammerich, Jacques Doyon.

Artists : Sylvie Bouchard, Jean Lantier, Monique Mongeau, Guy Pellerin.

According to Denée, the works of Bouchard, Pellerin, Lantier and Mongeau manifest a symbolist sensibility which was already apparent in the production of some Québec artists from the preceding generation. This symbolism tends to “replace the infiniteness of sublime Romanticism with the indefiniteness of interiority, the uproar of Expressionism with a discreet monologue”.

City Detour

Optica, Montréal, 1986, 4 p. ( 4 ill.), 21x21 cm.
Texte en anglais

City Detour

Author : Lesley Johnstone.

Artists : Medrie Macphee, Vicky Marshall, Carol Wainio, Shirley Wiitasalo.

Johnstone describes the juxtapositions and visual tensions in paintings by four Canadian artists (this English version of the text is abbreviated).


Wood of the West-Direction est

Optica, Montréal,1985, 19 p., 10 ill., 21x28 cm.
ISBN 0-9692021-0-5.
Texts in French and in English

Wood of the West-Direction est

Curator : Murray Macdonald.

Authors : Murray Macdonald, Marcel Gosselin, George Sawchuk.

Artists : Tommie Gallie, Marcel Gosselin, Terence Johnson, Robert Iveson, Rick Ross, George Sawchuk. Catalogue of an exhibition of six Western Canadian artists working primarily in wood. Brief artists’ statements accompany reproductions.

Site Lines

Optica, Montréal, 1980, 18 p., 10 ill. 21x18 cm
Textes en anglais

Site Lines

Artists : Colin Lochhead, Robert McNealy, Renée Van Halm, Bill Vazan.

McNealy’s statement points to different definitions of environment; Van Halm records the artist’s impression of Optica gallery space; Lochhead refers to the Wittgenstein house. Includes a description of the execution of Vazan’s work.


Gary Neill Kennedy :
Recent Paintings

Optica, Montréal, 1978.

Gary Neill Kennedy : Recent Paintings

Accompanying an exhibition held from October 30 to November 1978.

The destruction of

Centaur Galleries of Photography (Optica), Montréal, 1973, 16 p., 30x23 cm
Texts en English

The destruction of Milton-Park

Artistes : Clara Gutsche, David Miller.

Artists : Clara Gutsche, David Miller.

The photographs in this catalogue were selected from an exhibition prepared for the Centaur Galleries of Photography (Optica) in May 1973.
The abstracts for some publications were generously provided by ARTEXTE contemporary art documentation centre.