CIRCA Art Actuel is an artist-run center that supports experimentation and innovation. His mission? Disseminate the works of artists in contemporary art, all generations combined, who place the sculptural object at the heart of their approach. The Center supports projects that are as much in the spirit of a traditional practice of sculpture as those that develop hybrid sculptural and installation forms, arising from contact with other mediums such as drawing, print, photography, digital or painting. All this testifies to a strong will to participate in the support and development of sculptural and installation practices, in a spirit of openness and renewal.
By offering artists the opportunity to experiment and innovate, CIRCA art actuel offers a rich and daring program that aims to create encounters between works and artists, cultural actors and the public. To raise public awareness of current art, mobilize its artistic community, share the knowledge of each and contribute to the advancement of research and creation, CIRCA offers a variety of conferences, round tables, exchanges and events. In addition to its dissemination mandate, the Center advocates a line of conduct centered on the artist, hence the signature adopted by its members of placing “The Artist at the Center”, that is to say at the center of concerns, activities and community. In this regard, CIRCA is committed to the member artist by organizing five to seven networking and studio visits, offering diversified expertise to support artists in their careers and developing projects for the benefit of the artist. artist outside the walls.s.
(Chloë Lum and Yannick Desranleau, « Is It The Sun Or The Asphalt All I See Is Bright Black », photo credit Caroline Cloutier )
In 1988, in collaboration with the Centre de Céramique Bonsecours, Monique Giard, Yves Louis-Seize and Maurice Achard established Circa as an exhibition center. In September of the same year, they opened the gallery with the inaugural exhibition “Dix artistes : la terre”, presenting the works of Marie-France Brière, Catherine Widgery, Charles Daudelin, Bill Vazan, Pierre Leblanc, Gilbert Poissant, White Célanuy David Moore, Yves Louis-Seize and Cozic.
Initially, Circa aimed to promote contemporary ceramics and serve as a place for experimentation, research and dissemination. In 1996, following the creation of the Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec and in order to meet the challenges of the artistic community at the time, Circa became an artist-run center while continuing to promote contemporary art, especially sculpture. In 2013, Circa began a new chapter. The exhibition spaces were dramatically reconfigured and the new POPOP gallery was created. The Centre d’exposition Circa became CIRCA Art Actuel. Its new mandate not only addresses sculpture but opens more broadly to the concept of space. Today, CIRCA’s current art team consists of a Board of Administrators, a Director and a Programming Assistant. To ensure the proper functioning of the Centre, several specialized committees have been established that are comprised of members from various sectors.
Since its foundation, the Centre has presented over 250 solo, duo and group exhibitions in its two galleries. It has also participated in traveling exhibitions and in national and international artistic exchanges. It has exhibited the works of some 300 artists, mostly sculptors and installation artists. Painters, photographers, video artists and performers have also shown their work in the gallery spaces. Besides the program of exhibitions as part of its annual programming, the Center has developed many national and international events, often based on exchanges with Germany, Belgium, Mexico, Austria, Spain and France. In Canada, the Centre collaborated with artists-run centers in Calgary and Kelowna. The proliferation of these exchanges is to encourage connections and to maintain plurality, accessibility and the spirit of research and experimentation.