Atelier ouvert / Gabrielle Lajoie-Bergeron / August 15th to 26th
Courtesy of the artist
Lajoie-Bergeron investigates the divisions and interpretations of the world, the body and of history – both large and small. The project “La Noyée – Tremate, tremate, le streghe son tornate” (the drowned woman – shake, shake, the witch is back) inspired by a slogan from the Italian women’s movement of the 1970s, reused in 2017-2018 in several marches for the rights of women, notably in Rome and Washington, and is also from a Charlevoix Metis legend: La Noyée. With a series of paintings, drawings, small sculptures and installations, she explores the myths and rituals of the figures of witches and shamans. How do embody subversive elements in today’s society and counterculture? How do they illustrate our creativity and resistance, to act as new figures of emancipation? For a longtime persecuted, seen as hysterical or sullied, today they are presented in a better light. Although this return of those who claim to be “witches/shamans” is widespread; these mythologies are nevertheless still disturbing and stimulate heated debates.
Lajoie-Bergeron probes the mechanisms that construct images and history, their reproduction and circulation and the way they become part of everyday life. This expresses a need to reflect on collective and individual narratives through intergenerational discourse. Using a feminist approach, her explorations focus on notions of territory – private, public, uninhabited – and of belonging. What do we think about the notion of conquest and appropriation today? How do we enter it, get out of it, destroy it? Her works broach the relationships of sex, power and animality. Working the normative codes that archetypes of the female figure convey, she tries to fill the void left by images, whether they are feminist, political, social or form the media. She questions how the same representation can be both a source of domination and emancipation.
Gabrielle Lajoie-Bergeron holds a MFA in Arts visuels et médiatiques from UQAM. Her paintings have been presented in Canada, Europe and Africa, and she has received numerous prizes and grants. She has exhibited her work at the Maisons de la culture de l’île de Montréal’s network. In 2017, she was part of the CALQ delegation (section painting) to the 8th Jeux de la Francophonie in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.