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Benoit Aquin: 10th anniversary of the Chinese ‘‘Dust Bowl’’

May 2nd, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

Benoit Aquin, 10e anniversaire du Dust Bowl chinois [exposition_exhibition]
2017, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau, Montréal, Canada

Galerie Hugues Charbonneau is proud to exhibit six photographs excerpted from The Chinese “Dust Bowl” (2006-2008) series by Benoit Aquin. These works are coming back to Montréal following the Prix Pictet retrospective at the Mouravieff-Apostol House & Museum in Moscow. The exhibition will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the internationally acclaimed and award winning series of photographs documenting the human caused desertification of northern China and Inner Mongolia.

Benoit Aquin La motocyclette, Mongolie Intérieure (Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2006 Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive Archival pigment print Éd. 7 : 81 x 122 cm (32" x 48") Éd. 5 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

Benoit Aquin
La motocyclette, Mongolie Intérieure (Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2006
Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive
Archival pigment print
Éd. 7 : 81 x 122 cm (32″ x 48″)
Éd. 5 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

The Chinese ‘’Dust Bowl’’

Benoit Aquin has been travelling the world for over twenty five years to transform the image into a poignant witness of the often conflictual relationship between humans and the land. Guided by a masterful balance, his work combines some features of documentary photography with those of contemporary art photography. He plays on this tension and the fuzzy boundary between disciplines and formal languages in order to highlight phenomena that are linked to ecological and humanitarian crises, thus placing the series he creates within the tradition of socially engaged photography.

In this series, the success of Aquin’s photography approach is rooted as much in the pertinence of his environmental discourse as in its aesthetic originality. His strong visual signature is characterized by a mysterious golden luminosity, which is both unsettling and mesmerizing. The artist turns his camera away from one-dimensional, sensationalist images to instead favour quilted, complex and decentred compositions that simultaneously display the multiple forces and energies in play: the effect of China’s immense food needs on the agricultural lands, a destabilized nature that is unleashed in sandstorms, the migration of rural populations towards the cities, the austere strategies of communist city planning.

The series The Chinese “Dust Bowl” received the National Magazine Award Silver Medal for Photojournalism and Photo Essays as well as the prestigious Prix Pictet. Benoit Aquin was also the recipient of the Prix Antoine-Desilets (2006), the Canadian National Newspaper Award (2007) and the Grand Prix Lux (2007).

Benoit Aquin Tempête à Hongsibao, Chine (série Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2007 Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive Archival pigment print Éd. 5 : 81 x 122 cm (32" x 48") Éd. 7 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

Benoit Aquin
Tempête à Hongsibao, Chine (série Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2007
Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive
Archival pigment print
Éd. 5 : 81 x 122 cm (32″ x 48″)
Éd. 7 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

Benoit Aquin’s Biography

Since 1998, after his studies at the New England School of Photography in Boston, Benoit Aquin has participated in several solo and group exhibitions in Canada, the US, France, Switzerland, Holland, Spain, Greece, Germany, China, UK, Russia and the United Arab Emirates. Among his exhibitions let us highlight the ones at the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography (1994); Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (1996); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2008); Musée de l’Élisée, Lausanne (2010); Museum of Photographic Arts, Sans Diego (2011); McCord Museum, Montréal (2013); Somerset House, London (2013); Montréal Museum of Fine Arts (2013 and 2015); FotoDock, Holland (2014); Mouravieff-Apostol House & Museum (2016); as well as his participation in Mois de la Photo à Montréal (1993, 1997, 2003); the Canadian Biennial of the National Gallery of Canada (2012, 2017); and the Rencontres d’Arles in France (1991, 2014). His works have been reproduced in many magazines throughout the world, among which Time Magazine, Canadian Geographic, The Guardian, Foto8, Canadian Art, Walrus Magazine, L’actualité and Art Forum. He has also participated in the publishing of over a dozen press stories, monographs or photographic essays in order to share his environmental and humanitarian concerns with a broad public.

Benoit Aquin Camion en feu (Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2006 Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive Archival pigment print Éd. 7 : 81 x 122 cm (32" x 48") Éd. 5 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

Benoit Aquin
Camion en feu (Le Dust Bowl chinois), 2006
Impression numérique à pigments de qualité archive
Archival pigment print
Éd. 7 : 81 x 122 cm (32″ x 48″)
Éd. 5 : 101 x 152 cm (40″ x 60″)

Benoit Aquin’s works are part of the collections, among others, of the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts; Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec; Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography; Canada Council Art Bank; Banque Pictet, Geneva; Mouvement Desjardins; Banque Nationale; Caisse de Dépôt; Hydro-Québec; One Drop Foundation; Library of Congress, Washington D.C.; and the François Pinault collection. Benoit Aquin is represented by Galerie Hugues Charbonneau.

Benoit Aquin, 10e anniversaire du Dust Bowl chinois [exposition_exhibition] 2017, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau, Montréal, Canada

Benoit Aquin, 10e anniversaire du Dust Bowl chinois [exposition_exhibition]
2017, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau, Montréal, Canada

Benoit Aquin, 10e anniversaire du Dust Bowl chinois [exposition_exhibition] 2017, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau, Montréal, Canada

Benoit Aquin, 10e anniversaire du Dust Bowl chinois [exposition_exhibition]
2017, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau, Montréal, Canada

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