Canadian Art

See It

Pierrick Sorin: Peep-Art Pioneer

Fonderie Darling, Montreal Jun 16 to Aug 28 2011
Pierrick Sorin <em>Une vie bien remplie</em> 1993 Installation view / photo Guy L’Heureux Pierrick Sorin Une vie bien remplie 1993 Installation view / photo Guy L’Heureux

Pierrick Sorin <em>Une vie bien remplie</em> 1993 Installation view / photo Guy L’Heureux

“Une vie bien remplie” at the Fonderie Darling presents French artist Pierrick Sorin’s variations on the auto-filmages that granted him attention in the late 1980s. These short film and video works show the artist executing a series of everyday activities and mundane rituals; performed with slapstick theatricality, they are as grotesque as they are banal.

The show’s focal installation and titular piece consists of twin self-portraits: two large-scale video projections on the back wall of the foundry’s large hall. In front of these projections is a constellation of video monitors mounted on individual plinths, each video on a loop, representing Sorin performing a single ordinary action (getting out of bed, brushing his teeth, blowing his nose, etc.) on eternal repeat. The piece effectively reorganizes the unobserved events of a single day into simultaneity, resulting in an effect both vertiginous and chaotic. The manic parody of the auto-filmages is not as much a celebration of the everyday as it is a criticism of its clichés and platitudes.

Sorin also incorporates his auto-filmages into hybrid sculpture/video works, such as Titre variable #2 (known to some as Tourne-disque), a revolving record player crowned by a projected video of a miniature Sorin running in place, unable to get ahead and, craning his neck to look behind him, afraid to fall behind.

This article was first published online on June 30, 2011.


  • Kelly Mark: Asocial Media

    Art met life at last year’s Power Ball when it became a set for Toronto artist Kelly Mark. Mark hired professional actors to erupt in a scripted argument amidst the festivities—not just once, but three times. The result is a trio of videos.

  • Luis Jacob: Real Representations

    Last week, the solo exhibition “Luis Jacob: Tableaux Vivants” opened in Montreal. It’s the first iteration of a touring show that spotlights this in-demand artist’s skilful work with image and installation—occasionally putting white-cube viewers at the heart of both.

  • Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky

    It is rare to find a creative practice that harmonizes critical thinking and positive momentum. The Vancouver-based artists Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky, however, seem to have mastered this delicate balancing act.



[an error occurred while processing this directive]


  • Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller: Black Birds

    New York critic Joseph R. Wolin heads to the Park Avenue Armory where Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller are creating a buzz (and other sounds) at the US premiere of a dark, nightmarish installation originally created for the 2008 Biennale of Sydney.

  • Grange Prize 2012: Hot Shots

    One of Canada’s largest cash-value art prizes—$65,000 in total with $50,000 going to the winner, $5,000 to three runners-up—announced its finalists this week. Take in their wide-ranging works in this slideshow.

  • Wanda Koop: Into the Woods

    A visit to Wanda Koop’s cabin near Riding Mountain National Park in southern Manitoba proves intriguing for Vancouver critic Robin Laurence. There, Laurence writes, Koop bridges old Grey Owl myths with a new series of paintings on our increasingly digital culture.

  • Brad Tinmouth: Survival Strategies

    The basement of an art gallery may seem an unlikely place to create an emergency shelter. However, Xpace's lower gallery is an ideal setting for Brad Tinmouth's “If Times Get Tough or Even If They Don't,” which evokes a cold-war bunker.

  • Wim Delvoye: Blame it on Paris

    Silk-covered pigs, lattice-cut car tires and a tattooed man are just a few of the works that Belgian artist Wim Delvoye has shuttled into the old, Gothic wing of the Louvre this summer. Jill Glessing reviews, finding a terrific amalgam of high and low.

More Online

Report a problem