The maritime project of a lifetime

Photo: Seen Photo
“The clandestine” is a work which is simmered for a long time, so project-testament around wide open spaces and the navigation, the passions of the sculptor Pierre Bourgault.

When the door opens finally, after minutes — seconds ? — uncertainty, Pierre Bourgault does not go by four paths. “It takes a guy from Montréal to move forward “, lance-t-il of his booming voice warm.


The strong man of Saint-Jean-Port-Joli, one of the founders of the artist-run centre for local (East-North-East) and a standard-bearer of the sculpture, Quebec, canada, will show throughout the appointment to the image of this host : friendly, tongue-in-cheek, twining.


“I have a small side slobbering “, admit it, when I think of Quake time (2014), a project exhibited at the centre of the picture SEEN and worn by analog cameras fossilized in the mud.


Pierre Bourgault, formerly Bourgault-Legros, carved from a half-century from his hometown of Bottom-of-the-River, outside of urban centres. It has prevented expound, or Montreal, or Quebec, or elsewhere. This son of a sculptor has refused to be confined in the popular tradition, or in the monument vertical.


“It is necessary that all escapes from the earth, as it rises, to deify something. This is stupid, as an idea “, swears the poet, who has chosen horizontality as a means of expression.


For the year that begins, the artist of 75 years is about to drop a work which is simmered for a long time, so project-testament around wide open spaces and the navigation, its passions. The thing, called The underground, is a boat, a real floating object it will direct the summer on the St. Lawrence river.


It has to reach towns and villages at the rate of nine knots, maximum. In the manner of a troubadour, it will dock with his ” museum open and nomad “. It is hoped that the Darling Foundry will be installed on the Lachine canal, where in 2001 had rocked the yellow container of NNNEEESSSSSOOONN at the 47th parallel, as part of a broader project not successful. The underground is somewhere a version of this utopia, which consisted of a cargo ship-museum-shop.


Wood and sea


The pied-à-terre of Pierre Bourgault is located in the capital of wood carving, where he saw the day September 12. It was the marine foot, and the river has often been held off. But its nest, workshop and office is alive and well on route 132.


The place carries vestiges of its projects, of which the most imposing throne on the field. A sign with the capital letters identifies : “To sell living sculpture mobile 360° “. Precious cube glass, wood. It is a Chameleon (2014), built for the Biennale of sculpture of Saint-Jean-Port-Joli, a true copy of the Habitat, (1969), one of the first works of Bourgault.


Presented in 1971 at the Biennale Middelheim museum of Antwerp, in Belgium, the mecca of sculpture in the open air, Habitat has made the fame of its author. The prestigious Italian magazine Abitare in particular, leaning on it.


“It is an extraordinary place,” says the artist about the original sculpture, planted today in the bush family. You have a handle you turn. And you choose the environment that you want to see]. “


All the carved-work of Bourgault, haven cubic vessel of The underground — ” a barge “, says he, speaks of the same desires. Occupy the land, or the explorer, the attacking the least possible. These are works of functional, characterized by the themes of the observation, in the present time, of the meeting.


Pierre Bourgault has often worked by abandoning himself to nature, to its current. The charts of the installation NNNEEESSSSSOOONN at the 47th parallel (2003), such as the engraved plates of Music in mouth (1999), are marked by his wanderings in the sea. He even threw bottles at the sea — The first crossing of the Atlantic ocean single-handed by works of art (1989).


The bottles were in fact wooden hulls of 40 inches. It has launched four off the coast of Nova Scotia, each with its message. One has been found, at the other end, by an irish couple. Not so wacky, the dreams of the sculptor marino.


“To expose oneself, to go away, to have no borders, it is just that [my project], do not predict. It is the world of the sea, ” he said. We are so used to having a purpose. [The joggers] pass here always look at their watch. They perform. It is sad, a little. “


With The underground, Pierre Bourgault will not perform. Its goal, because it’s still a is to go where the art makes little. His barge, with a mast mirror, will approach slowly from the shores. The glare, he mused, will be a curiosity. For him, it is a work against the current, away from the show vertical against which it is drawn.


“The clandestine, it is a work that arrives from the off. [The people] will have a reading that leaves the little and goes towards the grand, as for a book. You read the preface and quietly you expanded, ” says-t it.