Sunday, October 02, 2016

1700 La Poste - Claire Labonté

Claire Labonté
at 1700 La Poste

October 7 - December 18, 2016

Claire Labonté is a self-taught artist. Initially, her paintings which deployed minutely executed motifs across large surfaces were classified as naive art. However, over the years, her art evolved into an orchestrated complex imagery with a striking autopoiesis. As she explained herself, her paintings happen in the space after she dips her brush in a paint and before she makes the mark on the canvas. It is during this meditative instant where her works take shape and the imagery is conceived. Her imagery expresses her personal type of visual poetics, her unconscious sense of aesthetics, and not only her own but also the collective mythology that surrounds her. In addition, the colours she deploys are striking and vibrant, and project the sense of great energy and vitality. The colours play the major role in the propagation of her repetitive motives and painterly spots into a complex visual symphony of balance, harmony and meaning.

Her notion of a painting “making itself” reveal two involuntary constants in her art: the repetitive nature of her artistic process and the mythological dimension of the resulting works. In 2003, after twenty years of personal exploration and in-depth searching, she enrolled at a university to investigate the enigmatic mechanic-like and the unconscious nature of her work. She obtained the Bachelor of Philosophy and the Master of Fine Arts degrees, and came to view her repetitive creative process as being at the root of the mythological dimension of her artwork. In 2011, after completing a thesis on the mythical and ritualistic aspects of her paintings, she focused her pictorial research on the concepts of repetition and replication.

In 2013, in an effort to resist the mytho-narrative imagery that automatically introduced itself through the repetition or replication of her small touches of paint, Labonté created L’esthétique des contraintes à l’Orée des bois -The Aesthetic of Constraints at the Woods’ Edge (see the top-most image). With this work, she came to discover that the circumstances involved in the application of a touch of paint not only accounted for the mythical nature of her own paintings, but were fundamental to creative activity as such.

Claire Labonté's pairings could be easily discussed in conjunction with the Alfred Pellan's art who used extensively the repetitive elements and themes in his later works. This type of repetitive-imagery depictionthe complex visual rhythms that are conceived and portrayed, might even represent an artistic approach specific to some Quebec artists, and might stem from the Quebec's collective mythology.

Claire Labonté has participated in international exhibitions in Switzerland and France, including the fourth Biennale internationale d’art hors les normes in Lyon. She is the recipient of awards and grants from Switzerland, Québec, and the Canada Council for the Arts. Her murals have been integrated into the architecture of a number of public buildings.

Since 2008, Claire Labonté has exhibited primarily in Québec museums that have the necessary space to display her large and at times almost endlessly wide works that are perceived as being “murals.” 

Click on images to enlarge them.
Hover your mouse over images for description and credits.

Watch the video about the Claire Labonté's exhibition at 1700 La Poste here.

1700 La Poste is a private space dedicated to visual arts. It presents events in the form of exhibitions and lectures. It is housed in a former Postal Station F, built in 1913, that was originally conceived by the architect David Jerome Spence. It is located in Montreal's Griffintown, 1700 Rue Notre-Dame West. The building was fully restored a century later, thanks to private financing from Isabelle de Mévius, and the vision of the architect Luc Laporte.

For more information, visit the 1700 La Poste website.
The admission to the exhibition if free of charge.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Madame, dans cet article, vous avez su cerner l'esprit, le coeur et l'évolution de l'oeuvre inclassable de Claire Labonté. Merci au 1700 Laposte cette Exposition représente à mon avis une synthèse parfaite de 2 décennies de recherche de cet anachorète du petit pinceau.