What justifies the institutionalization of a memory? To what kind of word does one attach importance? And why not offer sustainability to the moving, the nomadic, the fleeing? How may one hold onto this untamed, popular knowledge, this intimate connection to the land, beyond History, in the small, the day-to-day? How can one follow and keep track of our daily pilgrimage, our common wanderings? How can one create, within seemingly separate paths, points of binding, of junction? Marie-Line Leblanc and Sara Dignard thus propose to rethink the territory as a vast network of encounters.
Lines of Desire—Geopoetic Survey of Our Neighbourhoods
With their respective methodologies as luggage (writing, archival research, and crafted ideas and images), the artists will migrate to the eastern part of the Islands. They will meet with the communities of Pointe-aux-Loups, Grosse-Île and Grande-Entrée, seeking to be initiated into the intimate journeys of their citizens. They will discover the pathways dear to the “locals,” that structure their daily lives. The artists will thus travel all across the territory. From their improvised office at the Maison des jeunes de Grande-Entrée, and with the materials they collect (stories, pictures, texts), the artists will seek to draw up a new kind of mapping, which moves away from the usual topographic features in favour of the travels and affects of the people who live there.
This is the first collaboration for these two artists, who, with Songlines, have found byways to take them between their practices.
Artist-researcher Marie-Line Leblanc analyzes, translates and mixes information and knowledge. The Island context, walking, libraries, cartographic and documentary practices articulate a constellation in her practice. Her work stands out through the intersection of the heterogeneous, expressive patterns she employs. Informational art crafts, Leblanc’s works cite and combine scholarly language, places and works from Madelinot tradition, and information technologies to establish new dialogues amongst the things we take for granted. The artist captures what interests her and designs universes. http://chercherlenord.jimdo.com
For Sara Dignard, the work of memory in reenacting the real in response to absence appears as a central point, from one project to another. Whether by the citizen’s word, correspondence as a means of resistance, or territorial slam, poetry always serves as a lighthouse. Her encounter with the visual and performing arts has led her to overcome her own limits, to get in touch through new avenues with the territory and its memories, and to continue this vast undertaking of trying to withstand loss through words. Although she remains attached to the streets of her childhood in Montreal’s Villeray neighbourhood, Dignard has always chosen exile further and further away from the cities. It was in the Magdalen Islands that she found a corner of a table to accommodate an everyday life of retreat and silence. During her first island winter, inspired by the courage of this piece of land sheltered from the world, from where one sees everything coming from far away, she wrote her first book of poetry, Le cours normal des choses, released by Éditions du passage in September 2015.