Mary Grisey

Reversals: The Must Summer Event for Art and Culture Lovers!

By Dominique Roy, August 13 2021

Every other year, the organizers of the Biennale internationale du lin de Portneuf (BILP) put on a multidisciplinary artistic event of international scope. For the ninth edition, curators Adrien Landry, Donald Vézina and Dominique Roy invite you to discover mostly original artworks on display in various heritage sites in Deschambault and Grondines.

Under the general theme Reversals, twenty professional artists from Quebec (including two artists from Portneuf County), Canada, the United States, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland, Lithuania and Portugal share their views, experiences and apprehensions regarding the sudden changes they have faced in various situations.

Whether sudden or provoked, major reversals in our times can be driving forces on a personal, social, political or environmental level. In terms of creation, they often provide access to hidden resources.

Stéphanie Jacques (Belgium). Le cœur des mains (expérience 1). Flax & wicker. Photo: Denis Baribault

Naturally, many of the artists invited to the event drew their inspiration from the pandemic that has been raging across the globe for over a year now. On display at the Vieux Presbytère de Deschambault and Moulin de la Chevrotière are works created from subjects that reflect today’s sad realities, such as the loss of a loved one (Montserrat Duran Muntadas, Quebec), or brighter themes, in works attesting to the strength that shines through in acts of solidarity or to the relief that art imbued with joy and lightness can provide visitors (Jozef Bajus, USA).

Montserrat Duran Muntadas (Canada). La femme aux mille cœurs. Blown glass and crocheted flax thread. Photo: Denis Baribault

Others have chosen instead to share their fears and concerns about climate change and the consequences we may already be facing. For example, you can see sculptural works echoing the effects of global warming on sea level rise (Christine Mathieu, France) or glacier melt (Michelle Sirois-Silver, Canada).

Michelle Sirois-Silver (Canada). Ice Islands. Fil de lin, fibres et résine. Photo : Denis Baribault

Some artists have also associated the concept of reversals with technology. While some illustrate the major changes that resulted from the industrialization of textile weaving (Heidi McKenzie, Canada) or the use of the microscope in knowledge development (Chantale Bouchard, Quebec), others speak of the extent of the development of the Internet and the creation of a virtual world.

Lastly, several artists have approached the theme by exploring the linen itself, manipulating it, crushing it, showing it in a new light (David Merritt, Canada).

Mindy Yan Miller (Canada). Wearing Land. Leather, flax fibres, hair and buttons. Photo: Denis Baribault

Be sure to wrap up your tour with a visit to the Presbytère de Grondines, where the exhibition Le fleuve en partage showcases the works of 18 emerging artists from various colleges and universities. Stop off at Saint-Joseph Church in Deschambault and admire the works of two Quebec artists who participated in Contextile 2020 in Portugal.

Anie Toole (Canada). Le fleuve en partage. Flax satin, cotton weft, wool and flax canvas. Photo: Denis Baribault

A visit to the various exhibition venues will certainly be a roller-coaster ride of emotions that gives a new perspective on the subjects. The organizers of the BILP are once again offering the public the chance to discover, experience and celebrate the creation process. Let’s face it, art lovers have been sorely lacking in such opportunities over the past year!

We invite you to come celebrate the official opening of the exhibitions on August 22nd at 2:30 p.m. at Saint-Joseph Church in Deschambault, in the company of the artistic direction committee.

Source: Dominique Roy, Executive Director