Galerie Simon Blais is extremely excited to be able to present new paintings by Louis-Philippe Côté. Since 2015, Côté has been resistant to the idea of showing what is too obvious to us, in particular, the violence of images. Now more than ever, through the act of painting he seeks a state of mind, an unpredictable complexity, and an ever more profound need. In this new series of paintings, reading the works of Japanese writers like Junichirō Tanizaki and Osamu Dazai has led Côté to tackle a peaceful subject: on a lake, two girls in a canoe are preparing to leave the shore.
Côté has attempted to explore a vision outside of time, an ephemeral beauty in which the perception of the world and the things in it are limited to a specific moment. Between the vision and its expunging, through repetition and stylistic exercises evolves an uncertain, cyclical universe. Like the vertigo induced by an unsettled world, vivid colours, strange depths and a flickering light appear.
This momentary calm in Louis-Philippe Côté’s practice also provides him with a way to reinterpret a kind of painting from the past—that of Edvard Munch, Henri Matisse, Balthus, Giorgio Morandi and Jean Paul Lemieux come to mind. Once again, with these new works, Côté demonstrates his fervid spontaneity, skilled command of painting technique, and talent as a colourist.
Born in 1976 in La Pocatière, Louis-Philippe Côté has explored the issues of space, system, violence and control through various series. His investigations have shown his interest in, among other things, colonization by machine, precognitive cut-up techniques, and science fiction. His work has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions, including at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal in 2014, Galerie de l’UQAM and the Musée régional de Rimouski in 2013, and the Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery in 2012. Galerie Simon Blais has represented him since 2012.