What I see each moment I’ve never seen before

At Pierre-François Ouellette’s Centre Space gallery in Toronto I adapted two installations which have been seen in earlier incarnations in 2015: because something lightens in us at DNA Artspace, London, Ontario, in Patrick Mahon’s A Gust of Wind in October, and Vie étendue (feelers) at the McClure Gallery, Montreal, January (January light, so light). A third installation, Vent, is particular to this place (its title a wave to Patrick’s project last fall). During the two weeks of installation I was in good company, surrounded as Centre Space is by Feheley Fine Arts and its continually changing presence of art by northern artists, notably Shuvinai Ashoona, whose drawings, and collaborative drawings made with Shary Boyle, were on view to mark the launch of their fantastic artist book Universal Cobra.

Four artists helped see this through. Many thanks to Shellie Zhang for installation assistance on site, Lalie Douglas for preparation assistance in Montreal, and Phil Baljeu who built and programmed a dimming light fixture so Vie étendue can be seen in both natural and artificial light. Thanks also to Toni Johannesen, who took time away from her Studio Antico to help Shellie and I with interminable threading of polyester strips.


Everything held together (pour l’instant)


Exhibition of new work and works in progress, including photos, drawings, photo-drawings, transitional works, transitory works, reflective installations and photo installations, many of which changed, were added, or were destroyed throughout the course of the exhibition.

For more information and to watch a video made by José Garcia to accompany the exhibition, please visit the gallery website www.pfoac com



Learning to live on the ground (Somewhere behind my heart)

nylon monofilament, steel: 95 x 106 x 142 in / 240 x 270 x 360 cm

A network of monofilament is made by marking the points between pores on an enlarged photo of the artist’s back. Positioned over a map of stars situated overhead during the exhibition it forms a structure of lines into which fine thread is worked. A vaulted architecture of cellular layers emerges, attached to the floor by steel weights which mark the star points. Between the vertical lines/pores are spaces large enough to stand in.

Learning to live on the ground, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montreal (2008)
Circling the Inverse Square, Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Kitchener, Ontario (2013)

a continuous thread

nylon monofilament, 126 x 60 x 60 in / 315 x 150 x 150 cm

An arms-reach sized semi-circle of monofilament lines supports nearly ten kilometres of finer thread looped back and forth to form a human-scale space.

connective tissue, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montreal (2005)


there’s a place on my back that isn’t there

nylon stretch cord, steel cables, plywood and steel mounting structure: 126 x 60 x 84 in / 315 x 150 x 210 cm

Elastic cord is woven between steel cables, creating a space large enough for a person to enter and be supported, leaning into the webbed threads. The cables trace a “constellation” of skin on the artist’s back. [See Out here in space, 2005.]

connective tissue, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montréal (2005)
Search for Parallax (based on a constellation related to gallery site), Leo Kamen Gallery, Toronto (2008)

Secret Visibility

acetate discs, nylon threads; fans on timers

Discs hand-cut from acetate are attached to the gallery’s walls in an undulating mass. Household fans placed overhead turn on and off at different intervals, causing the discs to flicker and reflect whatever light passes into the unlit room from two passageways. The discs never move all at the same time and in some parts of the room are not visible when still.

Some day soon you’ll stop searching for meaning, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montreal, Canada (2002); technical assistance: Simon Nakonechny
Sense, The Edmonton Art Gallery, Alberta, Canada (2004); curator: Catherine Crowston
photos: Paul Litherland & the artist

Topographic Introspective

20 lambda prints on masonite (5 X 7 – 41 X 54 in / 13 x 18 – 10x x 137 cm) on painted wall with vinyl lettering

20 photographs are presented on a dark wall to mimic a natural history museum exhibition, complete with place names. The photographs are close-ups of my sagging postpartum belly; the place names, chosen by their similarity to my first name, are of sites around the world, and the named universe.

Uncanny, La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse, Montreal, QC, Canada (2002); curator: Christine Redfern
Corporel, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montreal, QC, Canada (2011)
installation photos: Paul Litherland

Words take on a life of their own


Video projection: 9 minutes, looped; projected on suspended fabric 77.5 X 120 cm

The videotaped image of the breath of two people talking on a cold evening is projected onto fabric suspended intimately at the same height and scale as those watching it.

Evidence, Plein Sud, Montréal, Québec, Canada (2000)
Breathing Room, Dunlop Gallery, Regina (2001)
Learning to Live on the ground, Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain, Montréal, Québec, Canada (2008)
video production: Paul Litherland (camera and lighting); Yudi Sewraj (editing)