May 16 – Jun 9, 2013

Galerie D’Este is proud to present Paysage en mémoire, a new exhibition of landscape paintings by Julie Desmarais.

Desmarais has devoted her career to depicting the Canadian landscape from the ground up, as it were. She seeks to capture the intimate character of her surroundings by bringing the foreground up to meet the viewer in a complex play of perspective that invites and includes, where so much landscape painting distances and fences off. Her mastery of detail and the depiction of disparate elements is impressive, but Desmarais’ true talent lies in creating an immersive whole. Her works engage the viewer to bear witness to the personal experience of nature as a highly complex and ever-evolving phenomenon, encapsulating both the chaos and the order encountered.

In her newest body of work, Paysage en mémoire (“Remembered Country”), Desmarais refers openly to her method of image-making. She explores an area on foot, creating the painting only once back in her Montreal studio. The resulting image is a composite of elements remembered from her observation, constituting an impression of the place rather than a precise duplication of what she encountered. In Desmarais’ work, the role of the observer is to organize the whole: the ripples in the water, the angle of view and, primarily, the sun-bleached colours and extraordinary work with light all depend on a person’s experience of a moment.

Born in 1976, Julie Desmarais grew up in the Laurentians. She is a graduate of the Université de Montréal’s Visual Art program, where she trained under the tutelage of Peter Krausz. She has exhibited in artistic institutions throughout Quebec and Canada and her work has been collected, among others, by Loto-Quebec, Fednav, the Hotel Gault and the ÉcoMusée du Fier Monde.