Marc Audette: Surfaces sensibles

January 15 - February 26, 2005




Surfaces sensibles is a collection of three bodies of work, all based on the underlying theme of water. Even though the large-scaled coloured photographs in the first room of the gallery depict no actual representation of water – no lakes or rivers – the impression of water is created by the predominant presence of the colour blue. Video projectors flash a series of light images onto the photographs. The resulting reverberations produce constantly changing aqueous formations which lap against the walls of the gallery and in which we bathe our gaze. In the back room, a projector throws light onto a massive red photograph. As we move through this space, the reverberations on the opposite wall appear to transform into waves. The last room displays several smaller-format pieces that echo the major pieces in the first two rooms.

I've been interested in the creation of digital images since the mid-1980s. In this project, I'm generally reflecting on the apparent improvement that every new technological device or software release seems to offer us. In a world where technological innovation is synonymous with corporate investment, I pose the following question: what are the criteria for assessing this improvement.

Images, including digital images, are intimately connected to the main characteristics of human activity like religion, nationality, membership and art. However, language, like image, is not a neutral vehicle. Setting ideal standards for the digital image means setting the language to be used for defining concepts, ideas and realities. All of which can be presented on a monitor, print paper, and photographic paper or on canvas since the last support also can be printed. It is this fine but unequivocal relation between tools and (oeuvre) that animate this work.

Surfaces sensibles reflects in particular at the notion of idealize beauty of the digital images. In a world where big corporations like Microsoft, Adobes, and others, are the providers of software, this notion is not only measured in terms of precision and size "mega-pixel", but more interestingly by the multiplication of specials effects filters; real allegory of those news dogmas of the image. Among those filter there is one that is called "Gaussian Blur". It creates a blur of to the images to which it is apply. But before being a filter, Gaussian is a mathematical model that produces random number in Chaos theory. By means of a Gaussian filter, and with a hint of irony, Audette has created an allegory of is one which blurs those supposed improvements that come with new software upgrades. Keeping in mind here that this mathematical model of randomness was incorporated to software as an improvement of aesthetic values. These aesthetic values that seem to become more precise with each new arrival of software upgrades. We witness here, a precise blur. This work was previously seen at the MacLaren Art Centre from September 23 to October 29, 2004. Article: Colin Wingiton, ArtCity Magazine, "Marc Audette: l'eau/water", Aug/Sep/Oct/Nov 2004.

The gallery will also be participating in "The Montreal All-Nighter" featuring the exhibition by Marc Audette, and the musical stylings of dj Eloi Desjardins (10pm), in conjunction with the MONTREAL HIGH LIGHTS Festival, taking place over the night of Saturday, February 26 and Sunday, February 27. The event starts at 6pm Saturday 6pm, and ends Sunday at 6am.


Dault, Julia. The National Post, At the Galleries, 1 september, 2005

Redfern, Christine. Mirror, Life and Luck, 1-7 septembre, 2005, p53

Mavrikakis, Nicolas. Voir, Audette et Steinman, 1 septembre, 2005. p68


-Marc Audette's page on the PFOAC website