This is 5 Questions. Each week, we send five questions to an artist featured in Under the Radar, our weekly email highlighting the best art on the ArtSlant network. This week we seek answers from Anne-Marie Giroux.
What are you trying to communicate with your work?
It depends on the project I am working on. My work is both figurative and abstract, but above all conceptual. I always work from a theme that appeals to me and will allow me to deepen my research through the creative process. I am interested in the poetic expression that evolves through the theme and the conceptual aspect of the project. What I try to communicate is expressed through the idea, the purpose, as well as the color, texture, and architecture of the work. And sometimes through an emotion or through a state of being—or even sometimes through the title of the work.
The most important thing to me is to make sure that the work is not framed in a single perception. That way, the visitor who observes the work will have the freedom to do and live his own interpretation.
DÉRIVE no.3, 2014, Oil and mixed media on canvas mounted on wood
What is an artist's responsibility?
I cannot answer for other artists. Personally, I believe that my responsibility as an artist is to create projects that lead to reflection, to introspection. I must take a position and communicate my own interpretation of the world in which I live. Hoping that this will engender a dialogue...
Show us the greatest thing you ever made (art or not):
I have to mention two very important moments.
First one is when I was about 18 or 19 years old. I still did not know what I wanted to do or become. I decided to take a 35mm photography class in my school. I started to explore my city, Montréal. I took a series of snapshots of urban activity. When this photograph appeared to me in the darkroom, I did not know it yet, but it represented, in a way, the very beginning of my artistic approach.
The second one is during my BFA at Concordia University. I did a study in my sculpture and mixed media class. This study opened me up to the medium of sculpture as well as the medium of contemporary dance, which I was involved in for almost fifteen years before focusing my practice on painting and sculpture-installation.
Woman sitting on a cafeteria tray, Study, 1988
Tell us about a work you want to make but never will:
Something I dream to do is to find ten big, multicultural cities around the world. Then I would do an open call to find people (seniors, adults, children) who would like to participate on my project. In each city, I would create a huge work on paper with the prints of one hand and one foot of each person in the groups of people I would have selected. Under each hand and foot print, I would let them write their first name. After, I would find a building big enough to exhibit the work on paper which would be so long that it would cover each floor of the building. It is a dream...
Autoportrait avec oiseau de Los Angeles à la dérive. Self-portrait with bird of Los Angeles drifting, 2017, Oil and mixed media on wood
Who are three artists we should know but probably don’t?
Mathieu Lefevre, a Canadian artist who died too soon and is an inspiration to me.
—The ArtSlant Team
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(Image at top: Tube de peinture à l’huile à la dérive. Oil painting tube drifting, 2018, Oil and mixed mixed media on canvas mounted on wood)