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Louis-Bernard St-Jean


  • Galerie Youn 5226 Boulevard Saint-Laurent Montréal, QC, H2T 1S1 Canada (map)

Musical Abstractions

Considering the predominant influence of music in the creation of his works, the idea of using musical selections for both inspiration and as a theme for this first solo show came to him quite naturally. It was when St-Jean started looking at the different creative processes used in the composition of these songs that the “Musical Abstractions” exhibition was born. This exhibition thus explores the notion of abstraction, its role in the musical creative process and the link between these two forms of art, music and painting.

Each artwork in this exhibition originates from a musical piece selected according to three variants based on the notion of abstraction: first inspiration, where the texts were composed randomly, without meaning, message or purpose; secondly interpretation, where the general audience massively misinterpreted its meaning in a certain way, the songwriter’s intended meaning being quite different, and thirdly improvisation, for the musicians who constantly reinvent their songs at the whim of the moment.

As Louis-Bernard St-Jean attempted to capture the essence of these musical pieces he ensured to keep an equivocal thread in each painting so that both the song and the artwork remains instantly relatable to one another; with the propensity of the mind to resolutely find a more familiar basis that would give meaning to such chaos, making each person “see” something different when confronted to any abstract concept, attempting to interpret the hidden meaning of a song or an artwork.

By reinterpreting these songs as another form of visual and sculptural abstraction, a parallel is drawn between the song and the artwork, creating an interesting quid pro quo where the theme of abstraction lends itself to the play of interpretation.

Earlier Event: August 17
Damián Siqueiros
Later Event: November 4
Maxwell Hyett