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image
© Alexis Bellavance, Les premiers, 2013. Installation audio | Audio installation. 6,1 x 6,1 m. Avec l'aimable permission de l’artiste | Courtesy of the artist.

Alexis Bellavance
From September 6th 2014 to October 18th 2014
L'échelle des amas

*Opening:: Saturday September 6 (3PM)*
The most beautiful things are usually the simplest and two-dimensional things are easier to grasp than three-dimensional ones and there’s nothing like a white cube for isolating a work of art, to better look upon it, but it isn’t as simple as that, there are images that move and sometimes even images that aren’t images but are more like constructions, or experiences, images that one can practically enter.

Deployed in Alexis Bellavance’s installation, apart from the frame hung on the wall, is a machine, a rudimentary and useless technology, generating a quiet, fan-induced hum and as like to potato chip bags as it is to bubble gum—no reductive thinking intended—it is in fact mylar sheeting, normally used as emergency covering, its function here entirely aesthetic, poetic, the machinery recalling some of James Turrell’s work, or Anish Kapoor’s Leviathan, mylar, thin and light, in constant motion, nearly ungraspable, unveiling itself perfectly in its imperfect rustle.

Next to the frame on the wall and the fan is a closed door and when one opens this door, the Big Bang, the Universe, and the Milky Way, the darkness and the light and the whole shebang that comes with it, set in motion, a quiet black hole, as the mylar—also called “space blanket,” in its NASA-inspired manifestation—becomes enchanted, waltzes, changes, crackles and sings, it is very beautiful, the flip side of the coin, Bellavance’s is a machine that reveals its own simple and incredible operation, its shimmering, quicksilver, ever-changing, and never-repeated rustle, like leaves in a gust of wind—taking us from space travel back to elementary nature.

In the white cube, the painting becomes magnificent, wonderful, and yet so simple, but we haven’t a clue when seeing it from here, it is only a press release; to see the beauty of the machine, its obverse and reverse, one has to step up, look, open the door, experience, become enchanted.

Marc-Antoine K. Phaneuf

Marc-Antoine K. Phaneuf Marc-Antoine K. Phaneuf is an artist and an author. He has published three books at éditions Le Quartanier. His drawings will be on view at OPTICA in January 2015.

*Audio Performance :: Saturday September 13 (8PM)*
Alexis Bellavance and Jonathan Villeneuve will host Chantal Dumas and Erick d'Orion during an evening of audio performance in the Machine à deux temps at Belleville studio (6538 Waverly, Montréal).
Free admission

Since 2001, Alexis Bellavance has produced installations, photographs, and performances that have taken him around the world. He also makes music, is a member of the BOLD trio, and the joyful co-creator, with Jonathan Villeneuve, of the “Machine à deux temps,” a weird and wonderful instrument permanently installed in their inventor’s studio on Waverly street.