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Michelle Bui
Participation au festival annulée en raison d'enjeux techniques. The participation in the festival was canceled due to technical issues.
Jill Schweber

Lieu d’exposition
/ Exhibition place

Place de la Cité Internationale Rez-de-chaussée / Ground Floor, œuvre / artwork n°1
photography | print


Michelle Bui’s photographic and sculptural practice reflect the processes of accumulation, presentation, and eventual decay that mark our relationships to seemingly mundane items. Sensual and sensorial, her images point to the negotiation between our understanding of ourselves and the objects that we amass. Gathered primarily from the aisles of grocery, hardware, or craft stores, Michelle Bui reframes these objects of consumer culture. She parses their formal or material kinships and assembles them into temporary, fragile assemblages that sometimes exist just long enough to be photographed before they collapse, disintegrate, or even decompose. She has had solo exhibitions at the Esker Foundation (Calgary), Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver), McBride Contemporain (Montreal), Franz Kaka (Toronto), Parisian Laundry (Montreal), and Galerie de l’UQAM (Montreal). Her work is included in numerous collections, including those of the City of Montreal, Hydro-Québec, RBC Art Collection, Scotiabank, Collection Desjardins and TD Bank.

Approach and works on display

Baby’s Breath, Corset, Stud, Mikado, Oyster, Les membranes (terra cotta) (2019-2022)

Borrowing from the tradition of still life, Michelle Bui’s photographs depict unusual juxtapositions of flowers with discarded plastics. The images playfully reconstruct the detritus of a throwaway society, implicitly asking what else can be made from discard, and how objects are valued. The brightly-coloured montages show the beauty in the mundane, recasting everyday life into parsed surreal visions. Within these two-dimensional images there is a world of sensuality, a fascination with texture and material, where amorphous and bodily qualities of rubber or latex gloves seem to borrow form from the plant materials they appear beside. The artist also uses ceramics in her work to add to the compositions, which are often anthropomorphic, appearing here in Stud, Oyster, and Les Membranes (The Membranes). By creating ceramic sculptures and supports to integrate into scenes with discarded materials, often made from plastic, Michelle Bui implicitly questions the boundaries between the synthetic and the natural.


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