Michael Snow. Windows

Curator: Martha Langford

Artist: Michael Snow

September 9, 2005 - October 8, 2005

Opening: September 8, 2005, 5:00 pm

Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal and the Galerie de l’UQAM launched, on September 8, a major exhibition devoted to Michael Snow, one of the most significant Canadian artists on the international contemporary art scene. Entitled Windows, this exhibition is the brainchild of curator and art historian Martha Langford. Ten years have passed already since Michael Snow’s last solo show in Montreal, which was presented by the Musée d’art contemporain de Montreal in 1995.

The exhibition

The exhibition brings together works – drawings, sculptures, photographies, mixed media and videos – produced between 1955 and 2004, dealing with a recurring motif in the artist’s work – that of the window, which refers symbolically to the photographic apparatus, act and referent.

In the artist’s own words, the camera is a mirror equipped with a memory which, through the different variables it brings into play, transforms events, phenomena and actors into objects. Once photographed, the subjects that Snow makes or assembles lose their quality as subjects in the strict sense of the term and become photographic supports in their own right.

The artist thereby invites us to look “there” while remaining here, where we are. He takes things that are not physically present and makes them present to our minds, providing us with a living experience while maintaining the awareness of his illusions.

The exhibition is organised under the direction of Louise Déry, director of the Galerie de l’UQAM, with the collaboration of Artists for Kids Trust, North Vancouver; Christopher Cutts Gallery, Toronto; Jack Shainman Gallery, New York; Musée des beaux-arts du Canada, Ottawa; Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver and the artist.

The artist

Born in Toronto, Michael Snow continues to live and work there, although he has also resided in Montreal, Chicoutimi and New York. A multidisciplinary artist, his work comprises painting, sculpture, video, film, photography, holography, drawing, writing and music. He has received numerous awards highlighting the quality of his art and its contribution to the visual and media arts. These include the Governor General’s Award for Visual and Media Arts (2000) and appointments to the Ordre des arts et des lettres de France (1995, as a Knight) and the Order of Canada (1982, as an Officer). In addition, many universities have bestowed honorary doctorates upon him.

Michael Snow represented Canada at the 25th Venice Biennale in 1970. Since that time, he has exhibited in the most prestigious modern and contemporary art galleries and museums, performed musical works, shown his films at numerous international film festivals, been commissioned frequently to make works of public art, and published his writings. His works can be found in both private and public collections, particularly those of the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Ludwig Museum (Cologne and Vienna), the Centre Georges-Pompidou (Paris), the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal.

Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal

Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal is Canada’s only biennial devoted to contemporary photography. For this 9th installment, Martha Langford invites the public to explore the photographic imagination under the overall theme of Image & Imagination.

On the program for this event are 29 exhibitions of works by local artists as well as by others from across Canada and abroad (Australia, the United States, France, Haiti, the United Kingdom). These shows, to be held at various venues located in Montreal, challenge us to discover the links that unite perception and imagination.

Free public activities

– Launch of the publication Michael Snow. Solar Breath produced by the Galerie de l’UQAM, including a text by the artist and by Louise Déry
September 8 at 5:00 pm

– Talk by the artist at the Galerie de l’UQAM as part of Le Mois de la Photo conference and in conjunction with the ICI (Intervenants Culturels Internationaux) program
September 22 at 12:30 pm

– Talk by Raymond Bellour (Former director of research at the Centre national de la recherche scientifique, Paris, independent curator and film and photography studies theorist) as part of Le Mois de la Photo conference
September 22 at 7:00 pm

– Journées de la culture – Guided tours of the exhibition and of public art works located on the university campus
September 30 and October 1