Pierre-Francois Ouellette


Geneviève et Matthieu

13 Nov - 18 Dec 2021

M. Gros [Mr. Big]
Evolving and protean work, 2020-

Do you have a special relationship with your sculptures? What if they were the ones performing? How would they do it?

This new installation-performance by Geneviève & Matthieu is inspired by the Canadian investigative technique called Mr. Big which allows an undercover police officer to obtain a confession from a suspect of a serious, unsolved crime. Led by shape-shifting characters, living sculptures, dual weapons and a televisual soundscape, M. Gros tackles identity issues relating to surveillance, infiltration, idea theft and copying; but moves beyond classic investigative games with a narrative that pays special attention to a contemporary art flora.

From theater to gallery, M. Gros takes many forms. A performative version was presented at La Chapelle Scènes Contemporaines in October 2021, and it currently appears as an installation at Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain.

The duo Geneviève & Matthieu, from Rouyn-Noranda in Abitibi-Témiscamingue, started working in the late 1990s. Their work combines art, performance, music and everyday life. Playing on interdisciplinarity, from happenings to musical composition, and from performance to installation, this duo creates collective representations and stagings of social tableaux that are at times festive, but always human.

Since 2001, their catalogue of recordings includes five titles. Between the baroque, abstract expressionism and arte povera, their works have been presented over forty times in Québec, across Canada, the United States, France and Belgium. Actively involved in their community, Geneviève & Mathieu have been developing the artist-run centre l'Écart and the Biennale d'art performatif de Rouyn-Noranda for over 20 years. They take a critical look at past and current artistic movements: DIY culture, conceptual art and performance art. Through residencies, public dissemination and the experience of a body that bounces, transforms and blends into art, their works are constantly evolving.

Driven by the human spirit, their creative process proposes a living art that challenges the usual modes of presentation by changing the place, the duration, and the way of exhibiting and performing.