Recipient of the Prix en art actuel du MNBAQ 2016, awarded in collaboration with the RBC Foundation, artist Carl Trahan is pursuing in greater depth through writing and drawing a reflection on the striking impact of modernity, the weight of words, and the flaws of translation. The MNBAQ will organise the first solo exhibition of the artist in a museum.
Over the past nearly twenty years, Carl Trahan’s work has been presented at numerous artist-run centres and art galleries in Québec, the rest of Canada and Europe. He has taken up residencies at venues such as the Québec Studios in Rome (2012) and Paris (2007) and, in 2005, at Pilotprojekt Gropiusstadt, GEHAG and Kulturnetzwerk Neukölln in Berlin and at the Finnish Artists Studio Foundation (FASF) in Espoo, Finland. From 2005 to 2012 he explored translation and its transposition to the visual arts. In his recent work, Trahan has used drawing, similar to the act of writing, to depict concepts connected to translation, but he does not restrict himself to this technique. In the past, he has used the object, photography and installation. His most recent exhibition in Montréal, at Battat Contemporary, extended his exploration of Europe’s dark past, focusing on the period from the second industrial revolution to the First World War. In it, he addressed “both the excitation and the fear provoked by the technical and scientific innovations of the era, as well as the new lifestyle they imposed.”