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Melsa Montagne
Attendre une autre journée, 2018

“We all wear masks, and the time comes when we cannot remove them without removing some of our own skin.” 
- André Berthiaume

The original French title of Melsa Montagne’s latest exhibition, Indicible, can be translated in a number of ways: unspeakable, unutterable, ineffable, indescribable... and they all apply. She has chosen one of the most potent, and enigmatic, of subject matters for her new series – the human face. It can be a mirror, a reflection of beauty or horror, of ourselves. It can be a mask we hide behind, a mystery to decipher, a world to discover. And it is this aspect in particular that invests her works. The title is intriguing in another way, considering the artist’s public engagement via her art. Since graduating from Collège Montmorency in Laval with a degree in Fine Arts in 1998, Montagne has participated in numerous group exhibitions in Quebec and Australia, and is the recipient of a number of important awards. Notably, in the fall of 2014, together with artist Nicolas Des Ormeaux, she won the Tribute to Frédéric Back contest thanks to her public piece The Proliferator, a monumental sculpture created on a large poplar in Montreal’s Park La Fontaine. Reaching further to the public, her posters illustrating an awareness campaign initiated by Le Bon Dieu Dans la Rue, a charitable organization offering services to homeless youth, have been appearing in bus shelters and the metro since 2015. Speaking out using the medium of art has been Montagne’s forté, so to think of her message as “unutterable” intrigues... Here, she is drawing the viewer into an intimate and emotionally-charged realm, attempting to unveil, release, the “unspeakable” that lurks behind the masks we all wear.

(Suite de l'article dans la version imprimée de Vie des arts)