Rencontres de la photographie en Gaspésie invites the public to the unveiling of Plages (Beaches), a permanent stand-alone installation with its own augmented-reality application, which will take place on Saturday, August 20, at 11 a.m. at Centre culturel de Paspébiac. This project by Sven (Québec) follows on the heels of Plongeons, which he presented last year at Musée de la Gaspésie, in the town of Gaspé, as part of Rencontres.
In the form of a large-format mural, Plages displays visual snippets representing certain bucolic and historical aspects of the Paspébiac beach. By way of augmented reality, Sven invites the public to take another look at his composition using smartphones and tablets. The screens act as digitizers and reveal other images – virtual, this time – superimposed on the printed one and becoming the receptacle of an overabundant and disordered collective memory, a multilayered work revealing copious and untidy recollections.
Whereas Plongeons diverts world-heritage photographs – gathered, notably, from the U.S. government National Archives and from NASA – of which the artist presents a falsified interpretation of historical situations, Plages draws its material from the local population. A residency at Centre culturel de Paspébiac done in fall 2021 allowed him to come into contact with the residents of Paspébiac and the surrounding area in order to collect their photographic memories. The citizens are already highly active in sharing personal archives via the Facebook group “Raconte-moi Paspébiac.” Sven also had access to the Musée de la Gaspésie’s archive center.
Plages was created in collaboration with developer Paul Gascou-Vaillancourt. Realization of this project was made possible thanks to the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts.
Stefan Buridans, a.k.a. Sven, has been living and working in Montreal since 2007. A graduate in film studies (ESEC, Paris), he has a particular interest in the visual print left on our collective memory. His research in digital arts is the result of professional audiovisual experiences and invites the spectator to cross the indefinite space between an image’s perception and interpretation.
A founding member of the Mouvement Art Mobile (MAM) in 2012, Sven initiates events in the public and digital space. He promotes in the institutional and academic fields the recognition of a contemporary notion of mobility in art. With the MAM, Sven was the commissioner of Mobilisations, the first Canadian mobile art retrospective, of which he managed the catalog’s publication.
His first exhibition, Plongeons, a device integrating augmented reality, is currently touring in Québec art centers and cultural houses.