Art Souterrain

Background

CARL BOUCHARD

localisation : 1388 Saint-Catherine 

Artist

Carl Bouchard was born in La Baie in 1967, and earned Bachelor’s (1990) and Master’s (2014) Degrees from the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi. His interests lie in psychic and affective mechanisms, which he evokes through a multidisciplinary practice imbued with sensitivity. He is President and Founder of LOBE (1993) artist-run centre.

Bouchard has twenty-some solo exhibitions to his credit, in addition to having participated in sixty-some group exhibitions in Canada and internationally. Not only has he exhibited work at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (1997), Musée régional de Rimouski (2006), Musée d’art de Joliette (2007), Musée d’art contemporain des Laurentides (2008) and at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (2001, 2003, 2008 and 2018), but he also participated in the Manif d’art de Québec (2000, 2008 and 2014) and Liverpool Biennial (2010). Carl Bouchard is the recipient of the Creator of the year Award given out by the CALQ (2014). His work has been acquired by numerous public and private collections in Canada.

Ten of Bouchard’s public art projects have also been displayed in Chicoutimi, Jonquière, Alma, Lac-à-la-Croix, Laterrière, Ste-Foy, Hébertville-Station and L’Ascension de Notre-Seigneur. The book, Carl Bouchard par défaut / By Default, published by Sagamie, traces the evolution of his artistic practice from 2004 to 2008.

Since 1998, Bouchard has also been developing an artistic practice with artist, Martin Dufrasne, which works in tandem with each artist’s respective practice. Their photography, installations and performances have been presented in over twenty exhibitions and performance art events in Canada, Europe and South America.

Art work

Starting at a young age, femininity in a boy is a shocking difference that provokes hatred. Intimidation, harassment and detestation happen in broad daylight, often with consenting (or at least silent) witnesses. Hiding is futile. Social and family pressures dictate the norms, attributing characteristics to gender. There’s a lingering consensus: NO FAGS!

This series of photographs and slide show (projected in the evening) illustrate a metamorphosis inspired by the memory of an anxious dream I had as a child. It was around 1976. I was 8 or 10 years old. I was standing at the top of a stairway, when something invisible startled me from behind. Scared, I hurtled down the stairs, and realized at the bottom that I had “become” a girl. I was ashamed – so ashamed. When I awoke, I was still distressed and ashamed.

Luckily, the realities have changed. But isn’t there still some residue of this prescriptive social pressure – the malicious gaze of “the Other.”

Carl Bouchard
Falling as a Girl, 2009

Photographic excerpts from a looped slide show
Camera work: Paul Cimon
76.20 x 80.8 cm
30’’ x 20’’

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