Viva! Art Action 2006

Performances, public and participatory interventions

September 28 – October 21, 2006

Project Description

Six Montreal artist centres have joined in a group initiative to launch a new international event in Montreal: Viva! Art Action. Artists, the public, curators, and providers of exhibition spaces will come together to showcase and promote action art — performances, “manoeuvres,” public and participatory interventions —, characteristically ephemeral, ethereal, changing, unfolding in the “here and now.” Viva! Art Action will foster an exchange between various practitioners and the public through a series of diverse presentations reflecting the explosion of performance art in Montreal and in Quebec.

Artist centers Articule, Centre des arts actuels SKOL, Centre d’art et de diffusion Clark, La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse, and DARE-DARE have come together to breathe new life into action art, which is relatively little known of the general public though it has largely been at the heart of visual arts culture.

Inspired by the Dada movement of the early twentieth century, the practice is now inscribed in the most varied contexts. The yearly programming of Montreal artist centres testify to sustained interest in performance art, from here and abroad, while its development is the result of specific key events, such as Galerie du collège Édouard-Monpetit’s Performance + Artefacts (1989), the biennial presentation since 1994 of Mois de la performance by La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse, and the 2000 and 2001 editions of FA3 — Festival Art Action Actuel —, including the saddly missed Anticorps space (2001) under the direction by Gabriel Doucet Donida.

This first edition of Viva! Art Action will also inaugurate the 14th SoToDo (Something To Do) Performance Art Congress, revealing about thirty artistic works scattered through the programming of the artist centres and in other intervention spaces. On this occasion, Bain Saint-Michel, serving as welcome venue and daily meeting place, will host theoretical discussions, practical workshops, and festive evenings. To support the Réseau des Centres d’Artistes Autogérés du Québec, an artist touring program is also scheduled throughout the region, in collaboration with Praxis Art Actuel, in Sainte-Thérèse, and TRAFIC Inter/nationale d’art actuel en Abitibi-Témiscamingue, organized by Écart.

Detailed programming info for all participating centres: