Elisabeth Picard

Montréal, Québec, Canada

Centre d’exposition Raymond-Lasnier

1425, place de l’Hôtel-de-Ville, Trois-Rivières - N46 20.604 W72 32.606

Waitomo cave

My approach is inspired by the architectural structures created by the transformation and growth process of nature. In response to the aesthetics of design and architecture that uses new technologies to produce complex organic structures, my practice has led me to develop a similar personal way to create my own sculptures and ecosystems. I impose craftsmanship techniques to the industrial materials, creating a contrast between their gross appearance and the natural look that I give them, raising them to a level of sophistication where their potential is expressed.

Following the creation of the major work: Rainbow mountains 2015, the Waitomo cave installation performed for the 2016 BNSC is also inspired by an extraordinary natural place: the Waitomo cave in New Zealand. This underground cathedral is home to a large colony of glow-worms (estimated at nearly a 1 million specimens) that sparkle to attract their prey in filamentous traps. Working mainly with tie wraps for this project, I furthered my research and use new industrial materials and technology to interpret the deployment of translucent and sticky structures created by glow-worms. The installation presents itself as a futuristic showcase housing a bright enchanting environment.

In your artistic itinerary, what perspective connects you to the Brave New World theme?

In Aldous Huxley's novel, the human being is born in a laboratory flask. Conditioned not to have any fluctuation of emotions, he is ''satisfied'' to occupy a precise place for the regularity and stability of the ideal society. Among other things, he's educated to over consume new things all the time and to hate nature.

In contrast to the established order of Brave New World, Waitomo cave is meant to be an industrialized reflection of the vitality of nature and its irregularities out of the human being's control. However, the dense cohabitation of the luminous elements presents itself as the urban environment of the “world state” of the novel. The geometric facets structure of the cave with its many lights twinkling in a random rhythm reminds us that individual and personal cogitation is an essential asset to society.


Born in 1981, Elizabeth Picard lives in Montreal. Granted with bursaries on many occasions (SODEC, CALQ, FQRSC, SSHRC, Concordia University), she earned a Master of Fine Arts from Concordia University in 2011. Her work has been presented in Canada, Cuba, France and Lithuania, including the Lonsdale Gallery, which represents her (Toronto), as well as Division, Circa, Diagonal, Materia and the “Biennale internationale du lin de Portneuf” (2013). In 2016, she will create an important work of integration into the architecture of the new East Angus CHSLD.

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