Location: Cornish Library, 20 West Gate
Medium: Concrete, aluminum, brass, steel, weathering steel, paint, air
Renewal of the Cornish Library, led by Public City Architecture, was undertaken with great care to preserve the character of the building within its historic neighbourhood, while addressing the community’s expressed desire for improved access and more usable spaces. A new glass reading room overlooks the river and features a whimsical artwork by local artist Michael Dumontier. The building addition is supported by a single concrete pier, which was the starting point for the artist's intervention.
Four Flowers is made of different kinds of metal, concrete, paint and air… It is kinetic, moving slowly in response to the airflow in the room. You may not notice it move, but it will look different every time you visit! Three of the flowers are inside, but the fourth has fallen off of its stem. Can you find it outside?
Michael Dumontier's work is marked by a process of reduction, material experimentation and minimal intervention. A multidisciplinary artist, his practice encompasses drawing, painting, sculpture and collage. His use of simple gestures and subtle cues may occasionally offer a minimal narrative. Michael lives and works in Winnipeg, MB. Much of Dumontier's practice involves collaboration, most notably by being the founding member of the Royal Art Lodge collective. Although RAL concluded officially in 2008, he continues to collaborate with Neil Farber, and the two come together every Wednesday to paint and write. Michael also maintains an ongoing collaboration with Toronto-based artist Micah Lexier. Other past collaborators include Tom Elliott, Todd Martin, Paul Butler and Guy Maddin (The Keyhole Experiment).
Dumontier has had solo exhibitions in Winnipeg, Toronto, New York, Boston, and Padua, Italy. The Royal Art Lodge has had solo exhibitions in New York (The Drawing Center), Toronto (Power Plant), Los Angeles (MOCA), Dublin, Madrid, Brussels, Burgos, London, and produced a major commission for the 2008 Liverpool Biennial. Dumontier's work is part of numerous international private and public collections such as The National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa), The Winnipeg Art Gallery, The Vancouver Art Gallery, Folkwang Museum (Essen, Germany), FRAC Picardie (Amiens, France), Fondation Antoine de Galbert (Paris, France), and Centro de Arte Caja de Burgos (Burgos, Spain).