Mélissa Pilon
at Forillon National Park



Mélissa Pilon, Montreal, Québec | melissapilon.com

For four years Mélissa Pilon has been collecting photographs of crowds from extensive archival materials. Meticulously extracted from journals, books, newspapers and magazines, these photographs are fragmented and then assembled in diptychs. These new archives, freed from context and points of reference, are rendered anonymous: in the process they become a new meeting place outside time where the individual and the collective meet up and merge.

The artist plays with motifs of human tides as much as with textures of the photographic image. It’s in the blurriness, the grain, the high definition or the compression that all the power of human coming together can reveal itself.

Individualities give way and create a hymn to that coming together. These crowds of winter or of war, distressed or jubilant, making demands, thirsting for freedom and movement bear within them the weight of numbers that makes a true difference. They insert themselves in the Gaspesian landscape to encourage us to once again take the time to observe and to set off on an encounter of the self and of the other.



Mélissa Pilon specializes in photojournalism and the culture of images in the context of graphic design. She’s collaborated on numerous publishing projects, like (Untitled) September Magazine by London artist Paul Elliman, and works with the publishing company Pas de vagues. She’s taken part in a number of group exhibitions in the Netherlands, Los Angeles and New York, and presented an individual exhibit in Montreal, at Galerie W D, in 2017. Mélissa Pilon has been the recipient of many grants, including the Millennium Excellence Award from the UQAM Faculty of Arts.

Image 1
© Unknown author, Zugspitze, Allemagne, 1965 (detail) / Univers Match, c.1970

Image 2 (diptych)
© Michel Campeau, Częstochowa, Poland, 1983
© Jean-François Leblanc, Montréal, Canada, 1994 (detail)

Image 3 (diptych)
© Unknown author, Berlin, Germany, 1938 (detail) / The Illustrated London News Group, vol. 193, 1938
© Arthur S. Siegel, Detroit, United States, 1939 / Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas, Museum purchase: Peter T. Bohan Art Acquisition Fund, 1984.0151