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Baie-Saint-Paul's 29th Symposium of Contemporary Art: 3 emerging Montreal artists tell a story

The theme underlying this year’s Baie-Saint-Paul International Symposium of Contemporary Art—now in its 29th prestigious edition—is an infinite and always giving one: storytelling. Starting August 17th, the BSP Museum will be hosting outdoor ‘storytelling & performance’ evenings from all kinds of different artists both local and international. That means animators, painters, and even tattoo artists will all be coming together in their respective trades and recounting personal tales around the campfire—or something like that.

For certain, the BSP’s outdoor tent will be a focal point of art in creation over the next few weeks, as each artist continues to build upon a vast, multifaceted collection. We’ve amassed a small list of BSP’s incoming talent ourselves to guide your refined tastes through the growing gallery over there. This particular story, as good ones often do, begins with three Montréal artists on the rise:

Daniel Barrow - Helen Keller in the Sculpture Garden from 'Every Time I See your Picture I Cry'

Winnipeg-born but now Montreal-native, Daniel Barrow more than fits the bill for an innovative, storytelling artist. Over the past few years, Barrow has been putting on some mesmerizing design and installation shows across the U.S. and Canada. In fact, armed with his self-made medium of ‘manual’ animations this past winter, he put on a solo show here at SBC Gallery and a solo performance of overlapping projections at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal. There’s a real rising star in this guy—and something to certainly catch live: he won the very prestigious Sobey pan-Canadian prize in 2010.


Diane Obomsawin is a gifted animator who, born and bred here in Montréal, also studied at Concordia and has produced a number of acclaimed films through the National Film Board of Canada. 2006’s Ici par Ici gained a myriad of awards as the quirky semi-autobiographical account of Obomsawin’s upbringing. The whimsy continued with 2009’s Vistas: Walk in the Forest, a great animated short where the story delves into some odd, collaged places. She’s surely found her niche at the BSP’s symposium.



Now here’s a real new one for storytelling and the Symposium as a whole. Independent Montréal tattoo artist Émilie Roby is permanently painting the body of a dozen gallery-goers inspired by the classic Greek myth of Persephone. She’s already started on one lucky visitor’s arm and another’s lower back from the looks of it, so if you make your way out to BSP, there’s a chance you could leave with a very well crafted tale tattooed right on you. You’d be very lucky as well—Roby is well known throughout the city for her illustrating skills with the body ink-pen.


Baie-Saint-Paul’s 29th International Symposium of Contemporary Art | July 29 - August 28
11, Forget Street (Arena) | symposium-baiesaintpaul.com