Browsing articles in "Valerie LeBlanc"
Sep 21, 2012
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Street / Screen Encounter (2012)

Write up of the MediaPackBoard experience / involvement with the World Portable Gallery Convention, Halifax, NS. Enjoy!

Sep 15, 2012
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MPB at the WPGC (2012)

World Portable Galleries Convention 2012

Halifax, NS

A collaborative work instigated by Daniel Dugas and Valerie LeBlanc

Here is a first glimpse at the project.  We will be adding to the documentation.

For the WPGC we assembled a bamboo ‘fishing pole’ and hooked up a mini-spy cam to it. Valerie put on the MPB and we stepped out to explore views of the city not readily visible to passersby. We talked with other pedestrians and pointed the camera into spaces that they were interested in examining. Several of the WPGC curators and Eye Level Members stepped out with us to try out the apparatus. As images were transferred from the spycam to the MPB monitor, we used a separate camcorder to record what the spycam saw.


With Michael McCormack (fishing pole) and Matthew Carswell (camera)


Michael Eddy (fishing pole) looking at the sign


Valerie LeBlanc carrying the MPB on Argyle St.


Michael Eddy lifting the fishing pole


In front of the Tony’s Pizza on Robie St., diners onlooking


Andrew McLaren on corner of Cunard and Robie, September 7 during the opening at the 161 Gallon Gallery

This project has been made possible with the support of artsnb

and EyeLevel Gallery and its funders

Sep 3, 2012
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WPGC 2012 schedule (2012)

The World Portable Gallery Convention 2012 is an international convention on portable galleries and alternative spaces hosted by Eyelevel Gallery during the month of September. The project celebrates the variety of spaces with which curators around the globe have extended public interaction with art institutions.

Opening Reception for WPGC 2012
8pm onwards
Opening Statements:  Michael Eddy, Liz Johnson and Michael McCormack
Performance: Judy Freya Sibayan’s Museum Of Mental Objects
Curator’s Presentation: Paul Hammond and Francesca Tallone
And Then We Party
Description: Join us in celebrating the dawning of a new era where gallery’s roam free and the wine pours like onsens of morning coffees. Paul Hammond and Francesca Tallone will deliver a curator’s presentation on Halifax’s legendary Gallery Deluxe Gallery. Judy Freya Sibayan’s Museum Of Mental Objects will take on it’s newest form, and the main gallery space will be filled with Halifax’s newest portable and alternative galleries. Eyelevel’s first exhibition in our  Member’s Gallery will include work by our very own Fixed Cog Hero, and Liz Johnson, Michael Eddy and Michael McCormack will kick things off with a toast to the WPGC 2012 in Halifax.

Thursday, September 6th

Expose Your Self: Gallery as Performer

7-9pm at the Seahorse Tavern 1665 Argyle Street
Curators Talk and Panel: Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel Dugas, Hannah Jickling, Gordon B. Isnor
9:30pm onwards in various locations on Argyle Street
Performance: Media Pack Board, Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel Dugas
Description: Running a gallery is one thing, wearing a gallery is another. Enjoy a beverage in Atlantic Canada’s right across from the site of the WTCC, and engage in a panel discussion by three truly mobile galleries; Hannah Jickling’s Coat Of Charms, the Alopecia Gallery (a gallery on Gordon B. Isnor’s face), and Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel Dugas’ Media Pack Board. Following this will be a live performance of Media Pack Board in various locations along Halifax’s busiest nightlife destination Argyle Street. Friday, September 7th
Convention Central

3pm at the HRM North Branch Library 2285 Gottingen Street
Round Table Discussion: Bernard Smith and other special guests.
7pm at 161 Gallon Gallery 
Curators Talk and Reception: Daniel Joyce and Miriam Moren
Description: Halifax is the scenic capital of Nova Scotia and the largest city in the Maritimes. It is famous as a tourist port of call and a cultural and historical hub, despite its ailing economy. Discussions about constructing a new convention centre in the downtown core have cited economic spinoffs and putting the province on the map. This means more visitors, more meeting, more deals, more money…eh? With Halifax as a backdrop, our convention seeks to look at why we gather, and the many different qualities of convening. We invite everyone any anyone to come and share your thoughts in this discussion.

Friday evening will be a chance to wind down at the homegrown gallery of 161 Gallon Gallery. This gallery has existed in the home of Daniel Joyce and Miriam Moren on the corner of Robie and Cunard in Halifax for almost a decade exhibiting works by many of Halifax’s emerging and established contemporary artists. Miriam and Daniel invite the WPGC to their home for a talk and reception of the work of Lukas Pearse in 161 Gallon Gallery.Saturday, September 8th

Eyelevelers vs. Klubbers Softball Match and Portable Gallery Picnic

Noon-3pm at the Olympic Softball Diamond (next to the skate park and the Pavilion in the Halifax Commons)
Description: Eyelevel’s very own softball team The Eyelevelers take on the Khyber Klubbers in a seven inning softball showdown and picnic. SUNSCAD will accompany us with some fun activities, while portable gallery’s roam the Halifax Commons. Sip some homemade lemonade, get yer hot dogs and cracker jacks, while taking in the Coat Of Charms, the Nanomuseum, or the Alopecia Gallery, all while working on evening out that farmers tan!For further information:

CALL: Eyelevel Gallery at (902) 425 6412

WATCH: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_LLIIEypoA or watch our live interview on the CTV morning show on Tuesday, September 4th at 7:45am.

Aug 7, 2012
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World Portable Gallery Convention (2012)

Valerie LeBlanc and I are bringing the MediaPackBoard to EyeLevel Gallery in Halifax to participate in the WPGC 2012! It’s going to be great ! More to come later, in the meantime, here is the poster.

Jan 12, 2012
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What We Take With Us – TNG (2012)

We just came back from Calgary where our video installation What We Take With Us is being presented at The New Gallery. The opening was on January 5th and the exhibition will continue until February 4th 2012.  We stayed at the John Snow House which is administrated by TNG.  It is an extraordinary place loaded with history.

Thanks to everyone at TNG: Tim, Jessica, Noel, Kathryn, Su, Volunteers – and all who came out to the opening!  Our talks will be posted online next week.

 

Our installation is also part of This Is My City Festival, an interdisciplinary festival of art from the margins.

 

Excerpt from the essay written by Tomas Jonsson:

Recurrent waves of colonialism and globalization have smoothed and prescribed our encounters with places. For the traveler, points of difference, or of distinction, are sought after, perhaps increasingly so, or patronizingly handed over. Monuments, historical sites and natural landmarks are increasingly oriented to ‘the amused eye’, which the traveler can then compare and develop a discourse “for the comparative connoisseurship of places.”

In What We Take With Us, Dugas and LeBlanc explore a complicated, contingent terrain, whose borders extend into and circumvent geographies, both physical and social, ‘here’ and ‘away’. Encompassing individual catalysts, personal experiences, mental and body memories, the resulting landscape can’t be easily anticipated or defined.

The videos mimic the internal ordering and filtering of places. Each series of vignettes display a personal vision, reflecting the difference in interpretation even by two people so closely aligned. They follow in Dugas and LeBlanc’s collaborative approach in their production and presentation, but in this case the associations are left to chance due to an unsynched running time. The result is a constantly shifting dialogue between the videos, with unknown permutations and combinations. 

Dec 2, 2011
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Sculpture Space – Then and Now 1991 (2011)

JUiCYHEADS celebrates 35 years of Sculpture Space!

Sculpture Space is unique in North America for its support of sculptors, both those who come to Utica, New York, as residency participants and those who continue after their residencies as working artists. The organization selects 20 artists each year for two-month residencies and has helped to advance the careers of more than 500 national and international artists since 1976. A non-profit organization with a 35-year record of success.  For the next few months JUICYHEADS will be featuring work from Sculpture Space artists. Click on a year and their name to experience their work: http://juicyheads.com/

Then and Now at Sculpture Space:

I applied to Sculpture Space when I was in residency at the Banff Centre.  My project, THE NEW PANDORA’S BOX was a two-fold installation work.  The first part was a trip around the world, and during the second stage, the Utica residency, I constructed the installation.  I convinced my partner video artist Valerie LeBlanc to accompany me on the trip, to share the adventure.

The entries have been collected from notebooks, reconstructed from past memories and / or from revisiting photos and video taken between December 2, 1990 and January 31, 1991.

Daniel Dugas

 

SNOW

That was a big storm, even for Canadians.  And it’s cold and damp.  We are wrapped with scarfs, tuques and mitts, walking slowly in single file in the knee-deep snow of Genesee Street en route to Mr. REDS.  We meet other walkers going up, coming down.  At every encounter we all put one foot in the deepest snow to let the other person pass.  From the air it must look like pirouettes of a silent ballet.  DD

WELCOME

On December 2, 1990, Daniel and I arrived in Utica via greyhound bus during the first snowstorm of the winter.  Although large and fluffy flakes began accumulating during the final miles of the bus ride from Montréal, we could not be held responsible for bringing it south, the Mohawk Valley of Central New York State lies smack in the snowbelt. VL

CHRISTMAS IN UTICA

They are called Appalachians, Adirondacks and sometimes they are said to be linked geographically to the Canadian Laurentians.  In any case, the snow covered mountains and hills there have that familiar purple/grey aura of bare hardwoods nestled in snow.  When winter comes to Utica, it is a Christmas card world straight out of Dickens.  VL

WAR

January 11, 1991 – 7 pm, Sculpture Space studio

The radio is on.  Politicians are debating the possibilities of going to war.  The stove is hot and it’s good because there is a big snowstorm outside.  The resonating voices and the radiating heat gets mixed in front of our eyes.  After hours of discussion the senators approved the Senate Joint Resolution.  War is coming.  DD  The Persian Gulf War Resolution

NATION OF WARRIORS

Once the Gulf War started, B52’s made night passes over Utica with the regularity of a milk run.  Off they went from the Rome Air Force base, carrying soldiers and supplies from the start to the finish of the bombing time period.  Meanwhile the debate raged on NPR, and many discussions in the cafés and on buses turned to worries about the threat of a prolonged state of war.  In my heart, I was a visitor to the country, on the streets, I was drawn into the news that made every headline.  The waitress’s father-in-law was called up as a reserve officer, one of the finest mechanics in town.  The car salesman’s daughter was an infantry soldier, he hoped for the best over coffee and eggs.  Generals ‘Stormin’ Norman’ Schwarzkopf and Colin Powell were all over the television news.  Rehashed and rehashed, tactical victories gave opportunities for veterans to enter the fray.  Old scraps were revisited as the current war played out, and Utica resembled the stage set of The Deer Hunter movie, more and more each day.  VL

APARTMENT

We got a small apartment on 939 Schuyler St.  It’s not big but as Jonathan (Kirk) pointed out “it’s cozy”.  There’s a hot plate and a toaster but the two can never be powered at the same time, as it will create a short.  And we will have to ask the owner to change the fuse.  The shower is also ‘unique’; it‘s perfect for anyone under 5 feet.   But, best of all are the trains.  It was worth taking the apartment.  The first time we saw it, we heard a loud sound and then another one, louder, closer.  We opened the curtains in a hurry to witness a freight train in all of its glory coming down the middle of the street right under our balcony.  You could almost reach out and shake hands with the Conductor!  DD

CULTURAL ICONS

Having lived for five years in Kingston, Ontario, as a kid, I was somewhat familiar with the cultural environment of Central and Upper New York State – from television of course.  As I sat glued to the T.V., I was storing up a range of programming highlights from Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester, Watertown, Ithaca, Utica and all points in-between.  Cartoons and black and white re-run movies started airing very early in the morning.  On weekends and holidays, I woke up early to soak it all in.

Upper New York State was a far cry from what I expected to find in the Big Apple, and yet different from what I had come to know in Canada.  With television as my window to the world: life down south in the United States of America, I knew that the hot dogs were bigger, more red; there was a bigger variety of candies; and dime store specialty gifts were more affordable.

All of those years later, as an adult, visiting Sculpture Space brought me to the actual source of some of those cultural icons already familiar to me.  I knew before arriving that bowling had been VERY big in Utica.  I personally felt that one of the most interesting programs on T.V. was the Sunday bowling.  Far from boring, the soothing voice of the announcer whispered the step by step action, building the tension of each player’s profile and emphasizing the high (monetary) stakes involved in winning the tournament.  And there were Utica Club Beer ads!  The jingle of the tournaments’ sponsor came back to me when I stood in the train yard outside the still-active Utica Club brewery.  The factory, with its high chimneys and the oversized letters’ sign towered high above street level, lending a larger than life silhouette to the Utica skyline.  VL

STOREFRONTS

Storefronts are fascinating.  They are markers of time, documenting life. In the few weeks since our arrival, we have noticed a lot of wig stores and wonder why.  It seems that every block has one.  Styrofoam heads with curly blond or long black hair resting on shelves, looking out all day long at people going by.  Somewhere downtown, between two wig stores, we saw an abandoned shoe store.  The front window is still offering a dazzling display of boxes sitting on pedestals.  Everything is coated with a layer of dust, 3 years thick at least.  It looks like the tomb of some great Egyptian ruler.  There are also wedding dress storefronts.  Today we stopped in front of one and took pictures.  DD

SCIENCE FICTION MEETS REALITY

When I walked on the street in Utica, a million story ideas appeared in my mind.  Every turn of the corner brought a unique storefront, café or colourful local character.  I had travelled all my life but was struck by the rich character of this city. For some reason, each encounter with a store clerk or conversation on the bus, seemed to present a string of other possible outcomes, all of them mysteries.

One day, after being spooked out by passing the darkest of abandoned parkades, I looked into a store window to see a perfectly arranged shoe display of the finest leather shoes.  Signs indicated the qualities of the particular brands carried and looking past the window box, in-store displays, and stacks of shoeboxes resembled a neatly organized library, complete with a sliding ladder to reach all of the available sizes.  It was definitely a very classy shoe store.

The only quirk about the place was that it was abandoned, and all of the fashions were 1940’s styles.  There was a thick layer of dust everywhere and everything was faded.  It looked as it the owners had just disappeared into thin air, leaving not a trace, and yet, in this city with a vibrant, animated street scene, no one and nothing had disturbed that shop.  I had often thought about the fact that Rod Serling, the science fiction writer of the television series The Twilight Zone had lived in Binghampton, a short distance from Utica.  When I thought about some shows from the series, I began to feel that the science fiction reality of his stories were hovering just below the surface here in Utica.  VL

STOVE

The wood stove at Sculpture Space is incredible.  It is a colossus object that looks like nothing else on earth.  It is the source of heat for the whole studio, the beating heart that allows residents to carry on.  When we arrived, in early December, Sylvia de Swann showed us the cords of wood outside and said, “Use as much as you need”.  We did.  DD

MUSIC

Music all day, music all night!  We all brought our favorite cassettes, but it’s Tracy (Brown) who has the biggest collection.  We listen pêle-mêle to: Voivod; John Cale; the grinders and the saws; The Red Hot Chile Peppers; Sinead O’Connor; the MIG welder; Bad Brains; NPR; hammers and cutters; all flowing and bouncing freely, helping us to concentrate and to create.    DD

OUTSMARTING THE DOGS


And in Utica there was Sculpture Space, that extremely well equipped and highly accommodating support for sculptors.  After a few days, I felt inspired to do a documentary about it.  I began to shoot possible cutaways.  I carried out preliminary interviews with Daniel, and the other artists currently in residence:  Tracy Brown, and Charlie Citron.

WUTR, Channel 2, the local television station supplying a percentage of local programming was located on top of Smith Hill in Deerfield, but its official address was Utica. I got dropped off outside of the station one morning to meet with the Programming Director.  Unfortunately, the weight of the impending war was thick in the air and the meeting was brief.  If war was declared, all programming would need to focus on that event.  Peaceful cultural concerns would be moved to the back burner.  I started down the hill to catch the bus, with not much hope for moving the documentary ahead.  That was when my real problems arose.

The walk back down was through a remote section of landscape with not much around but the dogs.  It seemed that everyone had already left for work and no cars passed me by either way.  I would not have cared except the walk was close to two miles and each abandoned home or farm had at least one dog.  I quickly developed a life-saving strategies.  Looking to the edges of the snow-covered road, I filled my pockets with as many rocks as I could find.  As the first of two beagles raced toward me from their driveway, I began throwing rocks.  No one was hit or injured but they got the message quickly and doubled back home yelping in defeat.  Whew!  There were two more encounters and then I used the ‘black bear strategy’ of lifting my black leather coat up high over my head.  On both of the other encounters, I charged toward the dogs yelling as loud as I could.  Unbelievably, it worked.  By the time I got to the bottom of the hill and found the bus stop, a german shepherd in his yard  started to run for the driveway, miracle of miracles, that owner was home and yelled for the dog to get back in the house.  I returned to Sculpture Space without a strong prospect for the documentary but I had a few stories to tell.  My own war to return went well.  VL

ESPRESSO

We needed a good coffee, something strong like an espresso.  We went out, looking for some.  After a little while, we saw in a window display, an espresso machine and some little Italian flags in coffee cups!  There was also a very small sign with the magic word Café above the door.  Despite the sign, the coffee machine and the flags, this place didn’t really look like a Café or a restaurant.  There was something private, secret about it.  Guided by our addiction, we opened the door.  It was quiet.  We saw a long counter and two little red enamel tables.  We looked at each other full of hope.  As we slowly made our way in, a man showed up and glared at us.  There was something Boris Karloff about him, something in his demeanor that was telling us that this might not be the right place.  But nevertheless we had found the place, we were in, and we were thirsty, there was no way back.   We risked, “We’ll have two espressos?”  There was a slight pause, a silence, and then the man pointed to one of the tables.  We sat down.  There was no music playing, no flowers on the table.  He was already behind the counter working.  We could feel his gaze.  The smell of the coffee started to take over.  After he put the cups in front of us, we paid him.  He pocketed the money and disappeared behind a curtain at the end of the counter.  Then, all of a sudden we heard a flurry of other voices, two or three other men.  They were speaking, yelling in Italian, swearing in English, the energy was on the angry side to say the least.  It felt weird being there.  We hoped that they were not talking about us.   We drank our espresso in a hurry, put a fifty-cent on the table and left.  As we stepped outside, we could feel the adrenaline rushing in our veins, it felt pretty good.   DD

After Sculpture Space Daniel Dugas and Valerie LeBlanc moved to Chicago where they did each their Master of Fine Arts Degrees at the School of the Art Institute.  They each continue to carry out individual creative projects and collaborations.  Social and political aspects of the world, as well as the technological changes that continue to augment reality are the pivots on which their practices revolve.  At the heart of their activities resides the desire to establish a rapport between what is experienced and what is imagined; the ideas that emerge to see the light of day, and those that remain below.  The underpinning motivation is to move communication forward.

Daniel’s website: http://daniel.basicbruegel.com/


Valerie’s website: http://valerie.basicbruegel.com/
4 short videos YouTube

Nov 5, 2011
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basic bruegel (2011)

Nouvelle image pour basic bruegel : http://www.basicbruegel.com/

Jul 20, 2011
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Booklet for What We Take With Us (2011)

Valerie LeBlanc and I are working on a documentation booklet for What We Take With Us. The video installation will be shown at The New Gallery in Calgary in January 5 – February 4th 2012!  Here is a screenshot.

 

Jan 15, 2011
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What We Take With Us – Ce qu’on emporte avec nous (2011)

• Galerie E DANS L’A Gallery, Moncton, NB, 2011

What We Take With Us

In this two channel video installation, each artist created a program of short videos exploring different aspects of memory and presence.  The programs are projected side by side.

An exploration of internal and external experiences characteristic to travel and displacement, the project grew from a research residency at the Sydney College for the Arts in Sydney, Australia – September / October 2009.  During our stay, we researched urban, as well as more sparsely populated coastal and inland geographies of New South Wales.  Starting from our personal exploration and interviews with others, we looked for indications of what it is like to live in a place; to call it home, and at displacement / shifts evoked by the experience of physically repositioning oneself in the world.

The research began from the perspective of examining the concept of home and what it means to individuals.  Over time, a discussion of memory and presence, of being in the world developed toward the realization that what we take with us might not be as important as what, or whom we sometimes leave behind. As the nature of living leads us forward, we are constantly required to face current events and circumstances; to grow and evolve within the present.  Ideas are shaped through interaction; through awareness of the importance of what we take with us in memory, and how interaction within social climates changes the point of view.  According to progress, of meeting life challenges; friends, family and familiar surroundings sometimes move into memory, and that becomes the only way to experience them again.  In essence, this is also part of the discussion of nomadism and contemporary life.

While developing strategies for conveying messages relating to the human experience, we have worked to open up half dream / half waking realities.

For more information see website

 

Ce qu’on emporte avec nous est une installation vidéo à deux canaux. Chaque artiste a créé un programme de vidéos examinant différents aspects de la présence et de la mémoire.

Ce projet sur le déplacement, la mouvance et le voyage, a pris forme et s’est développé lors d’une résidence de recherche au Sydney College for the Arts en Australie — septembre / octobre 2009. Pendant notre séjour, nous avons effectué une série d’entrevues à Sydney ainsi que sur le territoire de la Nouvelle Galles du Sud.  Nous souhaitions explorer les questions relatives au sentiment d’appartenance à une région, à une collectivité ainsi que sur l’expérience nomade.

Les idées contenues dans ce projet sont nées de l’interaction entre individus, elles se sont développées au travers du filtre de la mémoire et du souvenir ainsi que sous l’effet transformateur du contexte social. Tout en développant des stratégies de transmission relatives à la nature interne et externe de l’expérience humaine, nous avons tenté d’ériger un lien entre ce qui existe et ce qui est senti, entre le rêve et la matérialité.

Notre recherche nous a amenés à réaliser que quelquefois, ce que nous emportons avec nouspourrait ne pas être aussi important que ce qui est laissé derrière.

Pour plus d’information : site web

May 8, 2010
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Soundbury (2010)

• Galerie du Nouvel Ontario, FAAS, Sudbury, ON, 2010

Soundbury is a soundmapping project of the City of Sudbury by Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel Dugas. The recordings, collected during 12 hours of walking through the streets, have been uploaded to the website and to a google map.  Additionally, we added a series of thought capsules – red markers on the map.

Soundbury was created during the Fair of Alternative Art of Sudbury on May 8, 2010.

 

Soundbury est un projet de cartographie sonore de la ville de Sudbury par Valerie LeBlanc et Daniel Dugas. Les enregistrements ont été collectés dans la ville pendant les douze heures du projet et ont été téléversés sur le web.  Simultanément une mappe Google a tracé l’étendue des découvertes.  Nous avons aussi créé une dizaines de pensées-sonores – les marqueurs rouges sur la carte.

Soundbury a été créé lors de la Foire d’art alternatif de Sudbury le 8 mai 2010.
View Soundbury in a larger map

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Daniel H. Dugas

Artiste numérique, poète et musicien, Daniel Dugas a participé à des expositions individuelles et de groupe ainsi qu’à plusieurs festivals et événements de poésie en Amérique du Nord, en Europe, au Mexique et en Australie. Son neuvième recueil de poésie L’esprit du temps / The Spirit of the Time vient de paraître aux Éditions Prise de parole.

Daniel Dugas is a poet, musician and videographer. He has participated in solo and group exhibitions as well as festivals and literary events in North America, Europe, Mexico and Australia. His ninth book of poetry: L’esprit du temps / The Spirit of the Time has just been published by Les Éditions Prise de parole.

Daniel Dugas es poeta, músico y videocreador. Ha participado en exposiciones individuales y colectivas, festivals y eventos literarios en Norteamérica, Europa, México y Australia. Acaba de publicar su noveno poemario, L’esprit du temps / The spirit of time (Les Editions Prise de parole).

L’esprit du temps / The Spirit of the Time est un projet de transmutation du paysage publicitaire en paysage poétique. Ce livre est à la fois un livre de photographie, un recueil de poésie et un essai lucide mais ludique sur notre société matérialiste. Il a été produit en numérique et imprimé en quantité limitée.

Date : Décembre 2015
Genre : Poésie
Collection : Poésie
ISBN : 9782894239629

Éditions Prise de parole

http://www.prisedeparole.ca/auteurs/?id=148

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