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Karen Tam

Nous sommes tous des brigands / We are all Robbers

From November 11, 2017, to February 4, 2018

Curator _ Marcel Blouin


Since the early 2000s, Karen Tam has been studying the aesthetics of the spaces inhabited by a westernized Chinese culture, such as it existed at the start of the twentiethcentury. The Montreal artist is known for installations containing her own hand-made objects, which she uses to reconstruct karaoke lounges, restaurants, opium dens and chinoiserie curio shops.

The exhibition Nous sommes tous des brigands / We are all Robbers implies, with a certain degree of humour, that art, economy and culture take shape through theft. This “culture of theft”—or “borrowing”—speaks to contemporary issues relating to the mishandling of copyright and the concept of the authenticity of art, as the gatekeepers of tradition would have it. Bolder minds, however, would see these phenomena as simply adjustments to a new reality. The artist’s installations featured at EXPRESSION comprise objects she made in the period from 2008-17 : cyanotypes, cut-outs, papier mâché vases, pagodas and miniature Chinese arches or gateways, along with objects collected in the Maskoutain region of Québec. Since 2016, Karen Tam has been exploring new creative veins in terms of the missionary activities conducted by the Jesuitsin Quebec, which led to the creation of the Museum of Chinese Art, as well as other activities that will not fail to recall a certain phenomenon summed up in the expression Buy a Chinese baby !

The exhibition Nous sommes tous des brigands / We are all Robbers is presented in conjunction with the Musée régional de Rimouski, where it will run from February 15 to May 27, 2018.

Guided tour and opening, Saturday, November 11, 2017, at 2 p.m.

EXPRESSION will be closed during the winter holidays, from December 24, 2017, to January 8, 2018, inclusively.

Karen Tam | Nous sommes tous des brigands/We are all Robbers