As a photographer, Leo Divendal is known for his recapturing of archival images, without added legend. In the series presented here, he accumulates portraits, park scenes, children's games - all engulfed in a halo of opaline light. To these images, he adds others, taken in Terezin, Czech Republic, of buildings that today are the remains of a concentration camp to which four of his great-aunts were probably sent. In this succession of contrasting images, each image is imbued with a hidden meaning. Divendal, the delver into archives, provides here an experience that is almost existential. As a compiler of archives, he measures himself against a buried memory that has not yet touched his own.
It has never been the aim of art photography to provide simple testimony to the unfurling of daily life - at least, not of its substance, its insipid ordinariness. The photographic image, after all, is only indicative. It is also, and especially, the representation of a reality the contours of which it determines. Without being an aporetic motif of photography, the quotidian never appears as it is; the photographic image reveals its symbolic space. And for Yan Giguère, who walks through life without waiting for events to occur, the happenstances and serendipities of existence are not so much the subject as the background. They are, in a way, the basis for an intent that is ambitious yet treated with poetry and lightness: the portrayal of a quotidian transcended, liberated in a collective unconscious whose main quality is spirituality - that of humanity, its make-up, from Monday to Sunday.
Denis Lessard introduces his essay by defining what motivated Clara Gutsche to explore the world of cloistered nuns, its characteristic culture of welcoming, and the myths that surround it. Lessard then discusses the camera's incursions into the world of monastic women in Quebec and comments on the composition of Gutsche's images, showing how her visual construction sometimes reveals a certain sense of the foreign. After exploring how the social subtext is expressed in Gutsche's photographs, Lessard concludes with a reflection on the separation between the profane and the sacred in contemporary society.