Pascale Théorêt-Groulx  /  9.8 Mètres par seconde par seconde

Pascale Théorêt-Groulx explores the dichotomy between science and the human being, between the scholarly, irrevocable, and theoretical aspects of one and the clumsy, affective, and perceptible aspects of the other. Through installations, sculptures, and videos—works that seem light and humorous, yet are also introspective—the artist tackles the sometimes-stark contrast between these two worlds.

For example, the sculpture Machine à bulles, a Plexiglas box full of water that holds a hose connected to a pump for making air bubbles, is a miniature reproduction of a machine that some aquatic centres use to reduce the surface tension of water for divers. The installation makes one smile by suggesting a missed dive and evoking the athlete’s unintentional clumsiness. Similarly, the highly unlikely astronaut suit made of Tyvek material and saddled with pockets filled with air, which a dancer wears for a performance at the exhibition opening, seems to defy the laws of gravity and the ridiculous. The video Monter en bas also challenges gravity. Against a background of blue sky and slowly passing clouds, vignettes appear, intermittently projected into the space like subliminal images or hallucinations. In these flashes, mysterious actions, unidentified objects, exclamations, and laughter surreptitiously emerge and resonate. To emphasize the phenomenon’s fragility, the projector has been precariously set on a concrete and wood structure, on the borderline of instability. This construction is as unstable as the one framing the video À Perpétuité. In this case, the screen has been suspended by two cables and placed on a block in such as way so that it tilts back. The video presents a close-up of a woman’s head lying on the ground and seen from the back. Ping pong balls, which are sometimes held in suspension and sometimes fall and roll over her, come in quick succession to give this uncertain action a certain rhythm. Through propositions that light-heartedly challenge both aesthetic codes and the laws of physics, Théorêt-Groulx seeks to reveal the gap between scientific truth and the sensory world, between the scholarly and the profane.


Caroline Andrieux
(translated from French by Oana Avasilichioaei)

Pascale Théorêt-Groulx

Pascale Théorêt-Groulx holds a master's degree in media arts from the Emily Carr University in Vancouver, for which she received a grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research of Canada. She recently participated in two artist residencies at the Banff Centre in Alberta, and at DAÏMÔN in Gatineau.