Un peu plus haut, mon torse veillait sur vous
Pascale Théorêt-Groulx is originally from Gatineau where she obtained a Bachelor of Art with a major in visual arts and a minor in comics from the Université du Québec en Outaouais. In 2014, she completed a master's degree in media arts from Emily Carr University of Art + Design in Vancouver for which she received the Joseph-Armand-Bombardier scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. She has been artist-in-residency at the Banff Center in Alberta, DAÏMÔN artist center in Gatineau, Pigment Sauvage in Baltimore and Vermont Studio Center. From 2015 to 2019, she occupied one of the studios of the Fondation Darling. Her work has been exhibited in numorous solo and group exhibitions, including Clark Center, Dare-Dare, Galerie B-312 in Montreal, Verticale in Laval, Shenkman Art Center in Ottawa and also ICA in Baltimore-Maryland. She currently lives in Montreal.
Pascale Théorêt-Groulx has an abundant and diversified practice that involves performance, video, sound and installation. In order to question human relationships in their physical and social environment, through specific scenarios, she is interested in the modes of interactions governing our behavior. Often calling upon to fields of research outside the art world, her practice evolves between a rigorous approach and a more neophyte, capable of creating poetic images reflecting a liminal vision of a sensitive world where the questioning of norms and our apprehensions becomes a powerful creative engine. Initially conceived in 2018 with the support of the artist-run center Verticale in Laval, the project, then titled Un peu plus haut, mon torse veille sur vous consists of interventions during which the artist has traveled dozens of kilometers across upper-Laval territory with a drone she named UAE (Unstable Aerial Entity). These maneuvers were broadcast live on the internet and sought to go beyond the utilitarian character of the drone, capturing images, to make the aerial entity a real flying avatar of the artist, allowing to enter into communication with certain individuals on their way home from work. From the sky, at the opportune moment, thanks to a small box attached to the drone and connected to an electronic card equipped with a microcontroller, UAE let fall on the heads of the chosen people a shower of small papers on which were printed short inscriptions from Statistics Canada and to which the artist added more personal messages such as: “Take care of yourself”. Shown this time as a video installation, this version includes an iteration of the project from last winter in Montreal in which the UAE dropped a carrier pigeon filled with more personal messages about freedom and proximity to bring some comfort during confinement. Un peu plus haut, mon torse veille sur vous reveals, even in the choice of texts, the tension between proximity and distance, between protection, empathy and invasive surveillance. To see, in the small room of the Gallery B-312.
ISABELLE GUIMOND [free translation]