77 - Hiver 2013

The theme Indignation addresses the social and political upheavals that have crystallized since 2011, and whose momentum is seemingly unstoppable. In this context, how do artists express their indignation? If certain individuals among them decide — occasionally or persistently — to express their indignation through their art, others choose to take political action and to participate in popular demonstrations. This issue contemplates the various motifs of indignation, as well as the strategies employed by artists and citizens to express their discontent.


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Articles à la pièce

Marie-Ève Charron & Thérèse St-Gelais
Annie Gérin
Michael DiRisio
Vanessa Morisset
André-Louis Paré
Marie-Ève Charron
Alice Ming Wai Jim

We, the outraged


The Colour of Indignation
In this essay, the authors look back on the student strike in Quebec this past spring to show how the protest actions promoted political subjectifications and inspired ways to redefine the practices of democracy. They demonstrate how the strike, which transformed into a popular movement, gave rise to a multitude of tactics that signalled to the government the students’ rejection of the tuition hike and, in their mode of application, served as an effective critique of the logic of neoliberalism and commodification of knowledge.

Pussy Riot. Hatred
This text focuses on the concept of hatred to explore the performances of feminist punk band Pussy Riot. It addresses, on the one hand, the hatred shown by Russian leaders toward youth who are claiming their right to express themselves, and, on the other, the hatred felt by the victims of social and economic injustices. The article examines the means used by both the Russian government and Pussy Riot to engage in symbolic destruction—the apparently logical consequence of affirmed hatred.

Liberty Lost: On Economic Crisis and the Suppression of Dissent
Through a critical analysis of the work Liberty Lost (2010) by artists Carole Condé and Karl Beveridge, this paper addresses the loss of freedom of expression that was experienced by many of those protesting the 2010 G20 Summit in Toronto, as well as the broader implications of this suppression of dissent. It explores both the expression of the protesters and the broader expression of dissent by artists in general, much of which is concerned with the increasing precarity of both labour and the economy. Rancière’s notion of politics, dissensus, and the police further develop this analysis, by exploring a political philosophy aimed at elaborating on resistance in the arts.

Facebook Rendez-vous: Foundland and Syria’s Digital War
Have artists taken part in popular uprisings since the Arab Spring? Has that event given new impetus to activism in art? Foundland, created in the Netherlands in 2009 by Lauren Alexander and Ghalia Elsrakbi, would suggest as much. With their most recent project, Simba, the last prince of Ba’ath country, they show their support for the Syrian rebellion by decoding the propaganda images that an “electronic army” disseminates through bogus Facebook profiles. They foil such manipulative strategies by bearing witness to them before their art-world audience, and beyond, by their own visibility on the Web.

Red on Red
Based on a consideration of the theatrical performance Alexis, a Greek tragedy, set for the most part in Athens during the December 2008 riots, the author demonstrates that the play, in drawing inspiration from Brecht, raises questions regarding spectatorial involvement. Can theatre, as a representational space, provide avenues for reflection? This would require a reconsideration of the actor-spectator relationship. One must also remember that indignation must not lead to resignation but, rather, to a reflection in which the spectator may also become the actor in his or her own life.

The Ungovernables
In this article, the author comments on The Ungovernables, an exhibition held at the New Museum in New York in 2011. She highlights the exhibition’s trenchant socio-political nature, which contrasted with the art fairs taking place at the same time. The critical dimension of the exhibited works, all produced by artists in their thirties from all over the world, is in tune with the outrage expressed by the Occupy movement and the student strike in Quebec.

The Politics of Indignation: Art, Activism and Ai Weiwei
A symbol of the struggle for human rights, renowned artist, architect, and activist Ai Weiwei has become a global figure despite being forbidden to travel outside China. The committed political blogger is widely known for his outspoken criticism of China’s suppression of freedom of expression. This essay argues that Ai’s high profile has detracted from a deeper understanding of his recent art and activism as intrinsically linked to the current phenomenon of social media in the digital age.

L’École de la Montagne Rouge
Clément de Gaulejac


Public Vertigoes
Over the course of three weeks during which I visited the artists participating in the contemporary art symposium in Baie-Saint-Paul, I attempted to construct an experience by bringing together my observations, excerpts of discussions, and concepts drawn from democratic theory. This article captures that interaction. It shows a trap into which the symposium almost fell, but was finally able to avoid: that of wanting to “make visible” the creative process. The article shows the origin of this ideal and the way in which it helps to create a spectatorial view of social relations. It describes various aspects of the symposium that rejected this view, replacing it with moments of participation, contact, and conversation.

Help! The New Written Art Object. Alice Khan, a novel by Pauline Klein
Alice Khan is a short novel by the emerging French author Pauline Klein, who wants to make art without having to be an artist. A ludicrous comment on feminism, Alice Khan is more than just an artist's novel; it is a written art object, an artwork in its own right. The plot is narrated by a mysterious heroine who recounts her adventures living a double life as Anna, her artist’s muse persona, and Alice, her alter ego as an artist. Written in an autofiction mode, Alice Khan’s emphasis on language as material in art production inscribes the novel in a tradition initiated with a poetic throw of the dice.

Circuits, Bertille Bak au MAMVP
En s’installant au sein de communautés minoritaires, confrontées à des inquiétudes concernant leur existence ou leur identité territoriale, Bertille Bak parvient à transformer leurs activités quotidiennes en récits fictionnels. Ces micro-fictions filmées, que l’artiste renforcent par un usage particulier du son et du bruitage, permettent aux acteurs de construire de nouvelles stratégies de résistance face aux déplacements ou aux délocalisations auxquels ils sont soumis. Les questions de micro-histoire, mémoire, ou d’engagement, mêlés à la fiction, permettent d’imaginer un nouvel type d’anthropologie visuelle.

Stéphane Gilot, MULTIVERSITÉ/Métacampus
MULTIVERSITÉ/Métacampus est un compte rendu critique de l’exposition de Stéphane Gilot, présentée à la Galerie de l’UQAM à l’automne 2012. Alors que l’artiste prend comme point de départ le campus de l’UQAM pour investiguer le monde universitaire, l’article relève la pertinence du propos de l’œuvre (notamment, suite au « printemps érable »), mais s’attarde surtout à démontrer comment l’installation architecturale de Gilot rend compte formellement des multiples facettes de son objet d’étude.


Montréal | Vox Centre de l’image contemporaine, Jacqueline Hoang Nguyen, Space Fiction & the Archives by Anne-Marie St-Jean Aubre

Montréal | Galerie B-312, Jonathan Villeneuve, Faire la vague by Dominique Allard

Montréal | Galerie Occurrence, Jacynthe Carrier, Parcours by Gabrielle Marcoux

Montréal | Galerie de l’UQAM, Sébastien Cliche, La doublure by Aseman Sabet

Montréal | galerie antoine ertaskiran, Sayeh Sarfaraz, mémoire d’éléphant by Dominique Allard

New York | P !, Katarzyna Krakowiak, Shorthand by Aseman Sabet

Paris | Galerie Hussenot, Antoine Aguilar, Incerta Alba by Nathalie Desmet

Paris | Jeu de Paume, Laurent Grasso, Uraniborg by Vanessa Morisset

London | Delfina Foundation, Abbas Akhavan, Study for a Garden by Martine Rouleau

London | Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), Bloomberg New Contemporaries by Martine Rouleau

Montréal | Théâtre La Chapelle, Dom Juan_uncensored by Christian Saint-Pierre

Montréal | Usine C, Kurt Weill : Cabaret brise-jour et autres manivelles by Christian Saint-Pierre

Publication | Catherine Bolduc. Mes châteaux d’air et autres fabulations 1996-2012 by Dominique Allard

Publication | En imparfaite santé : la médicalisation de l’architecture by Dominique Allard

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