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From September 10 to October 10, 2015
Vernissage in presence of the artist: Sept. 12 at 6:30 pm
Atelier Circulaire in partnership with Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal is pleased to present the exhibition "Autoportraits robots" by artist Leandro Berra. The exhibition will take place at the Atelier Circulaire Gallery (space 105) as part of the 14th edition entitled "The Post-Photographic Condition" curated by the Catalan artist Joan Fontcuberta.
Stalked by the political police of the military dictatorship in Argentina, Leandro Berra managed to escape from Buenos Aires in 1978 and take refuge in Paris. When democracy was restored in his homeland, Berra felt the need to pay a posthumous tribute to his “disappeared” friends and acquaintances by re-creating their likenesses, but he found that his memory failed him. He then contacted the Gendarmerie scientifique in Paris and was introduced to a program used by the French police, Interpol, the FBI and the CIA to do facial composites by amalgamating the Photofit/Identikit process with the combinatory techniques of Alphonse Bertillon’s atlas of physiognomy, optimized with state-of-the-art IT systems. Fascinated by the program, Berra decided to test it with people he knew, asking them to produce a self-portrait without the aid of a mirror or a photograph. The resulting “virtual” image was then juxtaposed with a portrait of the identity-photo type. The diptychs shine a post-photographic light upon a number of philosophical and psychological aspects: loss and restitution, essence and appearance, truth and illusion, desire and reality, individuality and typology... “Know thyself,” Socrates counseled.
From Wednesday to Saturday at 1 and 3 p.m., the artist offers you to attend live sessions of facial composite construction that he will be produced with Quebec personalities and the general public. These resulting diptychs will be later added to the exhibition.
Atelier Circulaire, as an artist-run centre dedicated to the creation, research, production and promotion of printmaking, and is proud to partner with Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal for the presentation of this exhibition. Since 1989, Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal is a major international biennale that investigates issues relating to contemporary photography and lens-based practices.
This exhibition is presented with the financial support of the Consulat général de France à Québec, the Institut français, the Consulat Général de la République d’Argentine à Montréal and the company Nieto Senetiner.
Atelier Circulaire joins the event Circuit Index Design which will take place from Wednesday 16 to Thursday, September 17, 2015 in various Montreal venues, including the De Gaspe Complex. Atelier Circulaire also participate in the Journee de la Culture from Friday to Saturday on September 25-26 and to the Viree familiiale that will be on Saturday 26th in collaboration with other De Gaspe Complex Galleries (Optica, Centre Clark & Occurrence). It will offer the opportunity to do guided tours of its Production Studio and the opportunity to attend facial composite sessions by the artist Leandro Berra.