The disruptions we experience on a daily basis, both individually and collectively, prompt us to continually redefine our thought patterns. With that in mind, Moe Piuze has built the ideal studio where he can restructure his worries, ideas, and other aspects of his life through the technique of self-hypnosis—the ability to modify, at will, one’s state of consciousness between wakefulness and sleep to tap into the unconscious resources of the mind. It was while in this state, on the threshold of reality and the imaginary, that Piuze first drew this series of figure-landscape-studios that make up the exhibition J’aurai cherché partout [I Would Have Searched Everywhere].
Piuze then enlarged and reproduced his drawings, preserving the spontaneity of the original line, in an intuitive juxtaposition of large colour fields, landscape photographs, and various new or salvaged materials from his (real) studio, such as wood and plexiglass. Photographs of waves and the ocean reflect open, memorable spaces with several vanishing points, while the wood’s flatness and raw textures create contrast and bring the gaze back to the foreground, creating multiple potential narratives.
The resulting series of pictorial and sculptural works have a succinct visual language—a hand-saw, a bare foot, a square, a rectangle, a triangle, an arch, a mortise and tenon joint. These geometric, abstract, and anthropomorphic forms represent the idea of the body-house-landscape at the centre of Piuze’s practice. The body, the house, and the landscape are indeed recurring symbols in his work; they allow him to express his different identities (son, brother, father, partner, citizen, artist, etc.), evolving within a jumble of endlessly changing social conditions.
Presented in the Musée d’art de Joliette’s common areas, these imposing beings—the materialization of the artist’s unconscious territory—become part of the building’s architecture. Their presence contributes, in its own way, to the collective life of the Musée. Whether it be creating the best place to work, making the best drawing, or finding the best material, J’aurai cherché partout suggests the importance for Piuze to create a life that is both real and imaginary, liveable, and good.
Moe Piuze defines himself as “researcher-handyman.” His artistic development, going back 15 years, is composed of incursions into many disciplines (performance, video, photography, painting). He calls the mixed media assemblages that characterize his current production the “keystone” of his graduate visual arts project (UQAM, 2020). His works are part of public and private collections and have been shown in Quebec, in Canada, and abroad. Piuze is also the recipient of grants from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec and the Canada Council for the Arts. He lives and works in Rawdon.
The artist thanks the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec for their support.
Images in the banner:
Views from the Winter-Spring opening at the Musée d’art de Joliette, 2023. Photo: Romain Guilbault