Par la forêt
Musée d'art contemporain des Laurentides
Frances Adair Mckenzie
Through the forest
The Laurentian forest is rich. It hosts one of the oldest ecosystems on the planet, dating back to more than 10 000 years. Its fauna, flora and topographical contours feed the collective imagination, especially through local stories. In this narrative perspective, one can wonder about the constitution of a properly Laurentian mythology. One of the first formulations in favor of this idea is Domingo Cisneros' The Laurentian Bestiary (1987): a set of twelve sculptures representing fictitious animals of the region, accompanied by descriptive texts with ethological, anthropological and humorous tones.
Based on a reflection on this bestiary, most of which was destroyed during a fire that razed the artist's studio in 1996, the collective exhibition Through the forest intends to restore and supplement the mythological repertoire of the Laurentian forest. The five artists participating in the project were invited to present new productions that freely deploy the symbolic potential of this vast natural territory. The exhibition, which opens the 40th anniversary program of the Musée d'art contemporain des Laurentides, will also give an opportunity to present the photographic archives of The Laurentian bestiary, as well as the last two survivors of its corpus, La bête de la vallée de la Rivière Rouge and La bête paresseuse.