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  Isabelle Hayeur
   
 
Losing Ground
Films on the playlist
Losing Ground
Private Views

 
Isabelle Hayeur (Canada, 1969) lives and works in Montreal. She holds a Master degree in Fine Arts from the Université du Québec à Montréal. She is mostly known for her large-size photo montages, her videos and her site-specific installations. Her work is situated within a critical approach to the environment, urban development and to social conditions. She is particularly interested in the feelings of alienation, uprooting and dislocation.

”I have been exploring landscape issues ever since I started working with video. Through the moving image I am investigating environmental, urban planning and social concerns that I’m working on at the same time in photography. I mainly engage with altered landscapes, suburban areas and tourist sites. I show how our societies take over territories and adapt them to their own needs. My video works often take the form of a moving tableau and panorama. They are like journeys through different spaces that flow and merge into one another. The slow scrolling is not an invitation to become absorbed in contemplation, rather, one is led to reconsider the sites being presented for view.”

Losing Ground (2009) is a critique of urban sprawl and the resulting erosion and homogenization of the countryside across the world. With its negation of city history, of geographic particularities, and thus of cultural memory, this standardized urbanization imposes its amnesia, individualistic lifestyle, and jarring presence in nature. Filmed in Quartier DIX30 in Brossard (Quebec), the biggest lifestyle center in Canada, the video sounds out recently man-made territories so as to decipher humanity’s relationships with the environment. It confronts us with the dizzying spectacle of our diminishing local references, as they give way to cultural stereotypes, now become universal through globalization. CAMERA Lea Nakonechny (Arid Sea Films)

Private Views (2010) creates a parallel between two starkly different worlds: the wretchedness of the destitute and the conspicuous consumer lifestyle of the nouveaux riches. The video explores the themes of social inequalities, real estate speculation, and dispossession. It documents the decline of some North American cities and casts a critical eye on the emergence of wealthy new suburbs. These private residential enclaves are often gated and under surveillance. Their luxury homes, with their dubious architectural style, are the reflection of a world dominated by appearances, consumption, and social conformity. CAMERA Isabelle Hayeur & Magdal Hayeur


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