Solo Snow. Œuvres de / Works of Michael Snow

Curator: Louise Déry

Artist: Michael Snow

Fresnoy – Studio national des arts contemporains, Paris

February 10, 2011 - April 24, 2011

Opening: February 9, 2011, 6:00 pm

The Galerie de l’UQAM presents, in collaboration with Le Fresnoy, the exhibition Solo Snow. Œuvres de / Works of Michael Snow. Curated by Louise Déry, this exhibition features a body of photographic, video and sound works and installations of Michael Snow, one of the most inspiring figures in the art world in recent decades.

The exhibition

Solo Snow. Œuvres de / Works of Michael Snow wants to provide an account of the experimental nature of this pioneer of media arts. His prolific, protean practice reinvents itself through the ceaselessly replayed exploration of a large range of visual and auditory phenomena, and grows through the mutations of technological advances have made possible. His practice is in perfect resonance with the latest issues of research and dissemination in media art while being an integral part of their genesis and development. The body of works exhibited here poses a challenge to assessing Snow’s output, and highlighting recurrent features, such as the motif of the window as a frame, the interplay of interior/exterior and recto/verso, the metamorphosis, stretching or contraction of the image and sound, the representation of the technical referent (photographic, cinematic or audio), the relationship between object and image, and reflection on time and space.

Any exhibition of Michael Snow’s oeuvre can only be a sampling, an attempt to round out a sequence, an incomplete montage, an unfinished picture. Every Snow exhibition sets us before a vast territory to survey, where the various genres, procedures, arrangements and displacements between mediums put us within reach and earshot of sensations and meanings that target and affect a necessarily fleeting part of an imaginary and symbolic world transmitted through the experience of the image. Contact with the work becomes a rare occasion to turn our interest to the nature of the image and, following Snow’s example, attempt in turn to fold and unfold its motifs, open or compress its space, accelerate or slow its speed. This exhibition is the artist’s second collaboration with Galerie de l’UQAM, where his Solar breath, (Northern Caryatids) was the subject of a solo show and a companion booklet in 2005.


The exhibition is accompanied by a bilingual publication, co-published by Le Fresnoy and Galerie de l’UQAM, which includes an essay by the curator, Louise Déry, as well as texts by the artist, by Érik Bullot, film director; by Jacinto Lageira, art critic; and by Stéfani de Loppinot, film director and historian.

The artist

Michael Snow was born in Toronto, where he lives and works. His renowned talent and prolific output span the fields of painting, sculpture, video, film, photography, holography, drawing, writing and music. He made his first film in 1956. Wavelength(1967) brought him to the forefront of international avant-garde cinema. The excellence of his work and his contribution to the visual and media arts have been widely recognized with awards and honours, including he won the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts (Film) in 2000. In 1995 he was named Chevalier de l’Ordre des arts et des lettres, France, and in 1981 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada, promoted to Companion in 2007. He also holds several honorary degrees including one from UQAM, awarded in 2008. Since representing Canada at the 1970 Venice Biennale, he has exhibited at leading modern and contemporary art museums, performed and recorded as a pianist, presented his films at international festivals and executed a number of public art commissions.

The curator

Louise Déry holds a Ph.D. in art history and has headed Galerie de l’UQAM since 1997, working with artists such as Manon de Pauw, Dominique Blain, Raphaëlle de Groot, Nancy Spero, David Altmejd, Stéphane La Rue, Daniel Buren, Giuseppe Penone, Sarkis and Shary Boyle. She is the author of the first monograph on David Altmejd and curated his presentation at the 2007 Venice Biennale. In 2007, she received the inaugural Hnatyshyn Foundation Award for Curatorial Excellence in Contemporary Visual Art.


Canada Council for the Arts

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