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Maryse Goudreau: first recipient of Prix Lynne-Cohen
Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec
Above: Maryse Goudreau, Manifestation pour la mémoire des quais, 2012.
Above: Maryse Goudreau, Manifestation pour la mémoire des quais, 2012.
Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec
National Battlefields Park
Québec City Québec G1R 5H3
Canada

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New award to raise the profile of up-and-coming photographers

The Estate of Lynne Cohen, in collaboration with the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (MNBAQ) and its foundation, is proud to announce that Maryse Goudreau is the recipient of the first Prix Lynne-Cohen. The new biennial award intended for Québec artists seeks to support the practice of up-and-coming visual arts professionals (career spans a maximum of 10 years) whose approach encompasses photography. The 2017 recipient will receive a 10,000 USD unconditional cash grant.

Down the years, during the course of a long career in art, Lynne Cohen received many awards and grants and expressed the desire at the end of her life to give something back. She thought she could not have done the work she did had she not received the support she received, and she wanted to contribute, in however small a way, to other artists continuing their work. Andrew Lugg (Estate of Lynne Cohen).

The jury members praised the commitment and critical scope of Maryse Goudreau’s relevant, inspiring approach, not only from the standpoint of facets of photography as a document but also as a means of better reinterpreting the world and providing anchors at a time when memory and references are being lost.

Maryse Goudreau 
History, memory, identity and social commitment are central to the concerns of this young multidisciplinary artist from the Gaspé Peninsula, who completed an MFA in Studio Arts at Concordia University in 2016. Since 2009, her post-documentary approach has relied on processes stemming from photography, archives, video, installations and performance and participatory art.

Her significant projects include Manifestation pour la mémoire des quais (2010–12), which invites coastal populations to assemble on their town’s wharf (in New Richmond, for example) in order to determine the vestiges of a community marked by the abandonment of sites that define identity. Études du béluga, Beluga studies, her most recent project, explores another forgotten facet of Québec’s maritime history and relates the Québec government’s attempts to eradicate belugas in the 1920s.

Maryse Goudreau is part of a new generation of artists whose concerns focus on belonging to our environment, our amnesia, and exploitation and rehabilitation. The artists are witnesses to a world marked by time, natural or sociological elements, and local identity issues that are at one and the same time collective and universal.

Lynne Cohen
Lynne Cohen is certainly one of the most respected contemporary photographers in Canada and her renown extends to the US and Europe. She was born in 1944 in Racine, Wisconsin. Following a year of course work at the prestigious Slade School of Fine Art at University College London, in 1967 she obtained a bachelor’s degree in science from the University of Wisconsin, and in 1969 a master’s degree in visual arts from Eastern Michigan University. She settled in Canada in 1973, where she lived until her death in 2014. She first lived and worked in Ottawa for 30 years, where she taught at the University of Ottawa and assiduously pursued her artistic practice. In 2003 she moved to Montréal.

The singularity of Lynne Cohen’s work lies in her choice of spaces generally devoid of human presence and usually out of sight. Classrooms, science laboratories, thermal establishments and military facilities are all complex, difficult-to-access environments that the artist made visible in order to size up their oddness.

Lynne Cohen participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions all over the world. She received a number of distinctions, including the Governor General’s Award, the highest distinction granted for excellence in the visual arts and the media arts in Canada, and the first Scotiabank Photography Award, which highlighted the artist’s outstanding contribution both to the advancement and the influence of her discipline.

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December 12, 2017

location

Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, Québec City