ARCHIVES

Élise Lafontaine

AUTHORS / ÉLISE LAFONTAINE, JEAN-MICHEL QUIRION
PUBLISHER / CENTRE CLARK
TYPE OF PUBLICATION / ARTIST'S BOOK
DATE PUBLISHED / 2023
LANGUAGES / FRENCH, ENGLISH
SOFT COVER / COLORS
5.25 X 9 inches
94 PAGES
ISBN 978-2-9815886-2-3
$30.00

"Archives offers a personal narrative of my encounters with a prison, a cave, a psychiatric hospital, and an abbey. What these enclosed spaces share is their divergence from my own life. They are insular and self-sufficient, far from the medium of painting, although they provoke my desire to paint. My stays in and research on these places serve as a starting point for the act of painting; my presence, my body, and my gaze weave links between painting and space. In these architectural sites, I store up experiences, sensations, and memories where I experiment with a phoric place of my own: a view of the horizon in a panoptic world. Sometimes, paintings emerge.”

– Élise Lafontaine

Originally from Tiohtià:ke / Montreal, Canada, Élise Lafontaine's pictorial approach is rooted in extensive immersive research where she has infiltrated the prehistoric caves of the Aegean Pyrenees (France), prison and psychiatric environments (Switzerland), the Carmelite monastery in Montreal (Canada) and more recently, the Goetheanum which houses Rudolf Steiner's anthroposophical society (Switzerland). From these photographic documentations, she moves on to painting, where each series is created according to the particularities of the host site: light, volume, iconography, body sensation and lived experience inform the paintings.
Lafontaine holds a Master's degree in Visual and Media Arts from the Université du Québec à Montréal and a Bachelor's degree in Visual Arts from Concordia University. She has participated in various residency programs, including the Christoph Merian Foundation (Switzerland, 2022), Quartier culturel de Malévoz (Switzerland, 2018), the Leipzig International Art program (Germany, 2015), and the Vermont Studio Center (USA, 2012). Her projects have been presented in solo exhibitions at Sothu (Zurich, 2022), Projet Pangée Gallery (Montreal, 2022) and Nicolas Robert Gallery (Montreal, 2020-2021), as well as in group exhibitions at Centre CLARK, Rad Hourani Foundation, McBride Contemporary Gallery, Usine C and Art Mûr, Montreal, and SPINNEREI Autumn Gallery Tour, Germany. Marmo Gallery (WA, USA) will publish a book on her site-specific work in the coming year, and in 2023, Open White Gallery in Berlin will present her second international solo exhibition. Élise Lafontaine is represented by Pangée.