Eric Desmarais – “The Word Reflects the Noise of Past Contingencies” Opens June 9 7pm. Runs through July 7, 2011

Eric Desmarais – Le mot traduit le bruit des contingences passées [“The Word Reflects the Noise of Past Contingencies”]

The installation Le mot traduit le bruit des contingences passées [“The Word Reflects the Noise of Past Contingencies”] is based mostly on sonic concerns. Although its form and the elements used in it all point toward what should be a video installation, the work actually highlights the main feature of sound: its evanescence. Sound exists only in an instantaneous temporality. Through an attempt at playfully piecing back together a vanished sound event, the installation sets a series of ambiguous relationships between sounds and pictures, past time and present time, unique perspective and mobile perspective. Surveillance cameras and monitors – the guards of our relationship to the present time and our fantasies of omniscience and ubiquity – spy the inanimate shards of one of their own, heavily fallen from the ceiling, taking with it the sound of a past event. Inescapably, time dissipates the clamour of the noisiest events… Lacerated matter – the sole clue of the event’s violence – contains in itself the trace of a noisy transformation of matter. Through multiple perspectives on the remains of this incident, the work makes sound reappear. The sound is not reproduced; it is suggested, implied; it is written. So the installation transforms sound into picture, pictures into word, and word into sound. Therefore, the work addresses a number of issues in relation to temporality and mobility, through a series of cognitive games and back-and-forths between moving images, real time, sound, multiple perspectives, and a
single perspective. Are we in the presence of a sound work, despite the physical absence of sound?

Eric Desmarais



Palimpsest Magazine is an unbound anthology of multiples. Each issue consists of original work in print, audio, video, and mixed media. Palimpsest is an alternative medium for artists and writers to disseminate their ideas, celebrating the tactility of the object in favour of the flattening effect of traditional print and screen-based media. Palimpsest exists as a traveling exhibition and experiential object.

The upcoming installment of Palimpsest Magazine will take the form of an exhibition at the Khyber from June 9th to June 30th in Halifax, NS, as well as an accompanying publication. We are soliciting submissions of any nature: video works, audio works, print, text, performance, sculpture, etc, for either the exhibition or publication (or both).
We are interested in soliciting personal and critical reflections on the following: transference; the exchange of data and information; the degradation or protraction of the value of information; process; language and time; connectedness and distance; work and proximity; the distance between the initial and the conclusive; and, finally, the residue of these exchanges.

The exhibition, The Workers Installing a Work, will focus on the practice of outsourcing.  We are interested in considering outsourcing as a way to investigate the negative space between an idea and its resolution.  The Workers Installing a Work will address the personal and social politics of communication of information over space and time.  The Workers Installing a Work will consider outsourcing as both a metaphor and a methodology.  We will look to outsourcing for reflections on interdependence, systems of validation, and the distance between human and political bodies.

p a l i m p s e s t


CIRCA 1995