October 17, 2015 - Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal - Dana Schutz, Patrick Bernatchez, and Camille Henrot
October 17, 2015

Dana Schutz, Patrick Bernatchez, and Camille Henrot

Dana Schutz, Swimming, Smoking, Crying, 2009. Oil on canvas, 45 x 48 inches. Collection of the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, Kansas. Courtesy of the artist and Petzel Gallery, New York.

Dana Schutz
Patrick Bernatchez: Les Temps inachevés
Camille Henrot: Grosse Fatigue

October 17, 2015–January 10, 2016

Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
185, rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest
Montréal (Québec) H2X 3X5
Canada

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The Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MAC) is offering the public a chance to experience the intriguing worlds of three artists who are all extraordinary, though they differ in their preferred themes, approaches and media. From October 17, 2015 to January 10, 2016, American artist Dana Schutz surprises us with her reinvention of painting, which she has given a new lease on life; Québec artist Patrick Bernatchez shows us an interdisciplinary, polymorphous practice in which metamorphosis plays a leading role; and, in a video installation, French artist Camille Henrot presents a kaleidoscopic, 13-minute summary of the history of the universe. Beyond their formal differences, these three perspectives share a deep concern for mutation and cycles. 

Dana Schutz
Curator: John Zeppetelli

The MAC is proud to be the first Canadian museum to devote a solo show to American painting sensation Dana Schutz, whose art is a powerful meld of figuration and abstraction. The exuberant universe of this internationally renowned painter confronts the eye with unthinkable situations and unspeakable acts, while a multitude of references and allusions tickle the mind. The exhibition offers an overview of Schutz’s work, from her beginnings to her recent output. 

In her painting, Schutz constructs a perverse vision of our present time and everyday life. Informed by multiple references, principally cubism and expressionism, her deconstructionist enterprise features the body in all of its mutations and vulnerabilities. For example, in How We Would Give Birth (2007), a woman in labour pushes out her baby while contemplating a “sublime” painting. The Face Eater series, meanwhile, attests to a new species capable of devouring itself as well as regenerating. Schutz is a past master in the art of forcefully provoking an encounter between misfortune and futility in her paintings. Whether they be victims or executioners, her figures have a wildness to them, and the settings they are portrayed in are carried along by waves of vivid, acid hues carefully applied by the artist. 

Patrick Bernatchez: Les Temps inachevés
Co-curators: Lesley Johnstone and Kevin Muhlen

The Musée is delighted to present Patrick Bernatchez: Les Temps inachevés. This exhibition brings together, for the first time, major works from two cycles that represent a decade of conceptualization, creation, production and presentation: Chrysalides (2006–13) and Lost in Time (2009–15). 

Mutation of forms, themes and meanings is omnipresent in Bernatchez’s art. The exhibition title refers to the evolving nature of his practice, in which a work is never totally finished and each show is only a temporary stop along the way. The multiform works in the Chrysalides cycle revolve around questions of life and death, light and darkness, decomposition and rebirth. Begun in 2006 with a series of graphite and ink drawings, the cycle includes the sound installation Fashion Plaza Nights and a trilogy of films—I Feel Cold Today, Chrysalide and 13—which illustrate an industrial building’s inner workings, architecture and inhabitants.

Time in all its dimensions is the overriding leitmotif of Lost in Time, which mixes past, present and future, through lived, cosmic and performative time. The cycle comprises over 20 works, including films and videos, audio recordings, sound-based installations, photographic and etched-mirror pieces, and sculptural objects, including BW, a watch that measures millennia. In Lost in Time, a feature-length film completed for the exhibition, the story of a helmet-clad horse and rider adrift in a landscape of ice and snow is intertwined with a strange scientific experiment.

Patrick Bernatchez: Les Temps inachevés is a co-production of the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and Casino Luxembourg – Forum d’art contemporain, in partnership with Argos – Centre for Art and Media, Brussels, and The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto. 

Camille Henrot: Grosse Fatigue
Curator: Louise Simard

French artist Camille Henrot is making her debut at the MAC with Grosse Fatigue, a fascinating 13-minute video installation. This work earned her the Silver Lion for promising young artist at the 55th Venice Biennale in 2013.  

Dana Schutz, Patrick Bernatchez, and Camille Henrot at Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
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