Luce Meunier
4 16 may.— 23 jun. 2018

Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran is proud to present Luce Meunier’s third solo exhibition at the gallery entitled 4. The artist crafts her works from voluntarily preestablished constraints and codes to bring material and pictorial strategies into play. Luce Meunier pursues her practice of developing new rigorous “passive” methods and techniques to be applied to the traditional mediums of painting and engraving. Rather than directly manipulating the material—acid, resin, pigments, inks, water—the artist allows them to randomly occupy the surface guided by movement, breath, gravity and flow.

The exhibition title refers to the quadripartite division of surfaces, which correspond to an equal number of space-time captures and act as an archive of a fluctuating creation. The image symbolizes the fourth dimension, but also the four elements as well as the four cardinal points and resonates with the mineral or organic, fugitive and contemplative aesthetic conveyed by the works.

A large body of engravings and aquatints titled Aux quatre vents – courant d’air and Aux quatre vents – courant jet, is freely inspired by Elaine de Kooning’s approaches to printmaking. Luce Meunier redirects the traditions and techniques linked to engraving to play with the materials, making use of compressed air to manipulate the resins placed on the copper plates, before multiple submersions in the acid. For the Lignes de temps series the variations of greys were obtained by way of a slow and masterly diffusion of acid, applied in equal quantities and at regular intervals. The result is the image of the material’s slow movement in the water. Eau courante is an immediate follow-up of the Eaux de Surface painting series. She arranges coloured sponges in such a way that they cause the pictorial matter to “act.” Imbued and placed on the canvasses, they let their superfluous colours flow out. The fluids randomly explore and energizes the space, fusing with the support. The artist manipulates and controls the pigmented liquids, all the while maintaining an utmost formal simplicity.

With her practice and her deeply innovative techniques, Luce Meunier does not seek to dominate matter but, like an alchemist, to observe and sublimate it, to control it while at the same time allowing it to fully express its unpredictability. In creating with matter while respectfully accompanying it in view of capturing its essence, she immediately abdicates the artist-as-creator stance to instead adopt—and thus affirm—a gesture guided by a new ecology of painting and engraving.

Born in 1973, Luce Meunier lives and works in Montreal (Canada). In 2006, she was a finalist in the RBC Canadian painting competition. Her works were recently exhibited in numerous venues such as the Dunlop Art Gallery (Regina), Plein sud – centre d’exposition en art actuel (Canada), the Centre d’art et de diffusion Clark (Canada) and Parisian Laundry (Montreal). Luce Meunier has accomplished a number of residencies, namely CAMAC (France 2017), Banff Center (2014) and the Lobe in Chicoutimi. Her works are included in many private, corporate and institutional collections such as the Prêt d’oeuvres d’art du Musée national des beaux-art du Québec, the National Bank of Canada, Hydro-Québec, Bank of Montreal, the Queen Elizabeth collection and the Tedeschi collection.