Central to Chloé Desjardin’s approach is a keen interest in the history of artistic techniques, the symbolism of materials, craftsmanship, and the function of tools. As a sculptor, she is also sensitive to ideas as they emerge directly from handling the material. Such noble materials as bronze and porcelain are found alongside plaster and resin in her sculptures, which are often moulds. Pedestals, bubble-wrap packaging, plexiglass panels are elevated to the rank of works of art by virtue of their transformed materiality. This act brings out the symbolic value of the material, which is by no means trivial, but signifies to the same extent as the represented subject. The plays of reversals, reflections, and contrasts imagined by Desjardins thus bring into question the conventions of the art world. Her work foregrounds the simple questions that drive her art practice: What makes a work of art? On what characteristics do we base its value?
On the Musée d’art de Joliette’s invitation, she is making the curiosity expressed by others the point of departure for her own reflection a first in her art practice. Desjardins invited members of the MAJ staff the director, curators, registrar, head of visitor services, administrative assistant, communications manager to select an object from the collection and then to describe it. She will create a work in response to these choices. Her sculptures will be the outcome of an exercise of transposition and translation based on her interpretation of the initial texts, her research on the selected artists, and her desire to render hidden facets of the collection, particularly the conditions of works in storage and the constant care they receive.