medium: 35 azo dye (cibachrome) photographic prints, each 8 x 10 inches (20 x 25 cm)
installed dimensions: 78¾ inches high (from floor to top of frames) x 7 feet wide / 200 cm high x 210 cm wide.
This series of photographs forms an inventory of the signs that indicate the present limits of the city of Québec. Many of the roads and streets that cross the ‘boundaries’ of the city have a sign indicating the precise spot where one enters the city. Following a map of the Québec metropolitan region, I went along all the roads that cross the city's boundaries and found 35 places where the word “QUÉBEC” is installed. These signs make visible the geopolitical limits of a city which exists somewhere between all these signs.
Most of the landscapes surrounding these signs do not correspond at all to the image one has of the city of Québec. I found the word “QUÉBEC” installed in many different places: in the countryside, beside a highway, on a bridge, and even between two houses; which is to say, in the middle as well as at the periphery of urban activity. This creates a disconnection between the label announcing the city, the actual surrounding place, and the idealized image one may have of this city. These photographs present an urban landscape which is arbitrary, incongruous, and illusory.
Marlene Creates, 1997
A publication that includes this work is available:
Marlene Creates: Signs of Our Time