Tapis stressé [Crazy Carpet] constitutes one component of a massive project entitled L’œuvre pinte [The Pint Work]. And it is indeed a carpet, one whose pattern evokes the traditional arrowhead sash worn by Québec’s voyageurs at the time of the fur trade. To complete the piece, which covers an area of 40 square feet, the artist asked members of the community to save, wash, dry and assemble the some 60,000 cardboard milk cartons that went into it. The project derives its meaning and power from the scope of the effort involved and would not have been possible otherwise. Soucy is one of those artists who mixes art and social life. He practises what he calls "committed assemblage," a form of art in which the work as such is to be looked for more in the communication that is set up with the public. Collecting the many milk containers required brought the members of the community together around a common task, while also informing them that milk cartons were henceforth recyclable. The artist’s ecological concerns generated a very colourful object and led people to adamantly amass everyday containers as part of a consciousness-raising endeavour.

Galerie de l'UQAM

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