Guillaume Simoneau is a Canadian-born and Montreal-based artist who commenced his independent studies of photographs after receiving a diploma in applied science. Nowadays, his photographic practice is evenly split between editorial assignments and personal projects. Simoneau's work centers mostly on transitional spaces within universal themes, although he does have a sizable amount of portraiture pieces in his portfolio as well. This artist also creates a number of minimalistic compositions on regular basis - these usually feature small, detailed items on an unidentifiable surface.
By the artist's own claim, the main thing his work needs to tell the viewer is that everything is going to be okay. Oftentimes, this context is subtly underlining the entire photo - however, some series and projects are clearly aiming to achieve this goal as directly as possible. The latter characteristic is definitely applicable to the Love and War series. This project was a true milestone of his career as it established the photographer as a unique and talented author. In 2000, this author met an American girl called Caroline Annandale at a Maine Media Workshop. The two fell in love, but this newly founded relationship took a strange twist when Caroline enlisted in the US Army following the aftermath of the notorious 9/11. Left behind, the author nursed feelings of heartbreak, abandonment and deep anxiety about the safety of his lover. However, their relationship survived the unusual long-distance situation thanks to emails, letters, text messages and photos. These Love and War photos, very interesting due to the lovers' narrative, take the viewer on a journey into a passionate, turbulent relationship that ultimately sends the message that everything will be okay.
The only creative drive Simoneau believes truly matters is the intuition, raw and un-intellectualized impulse that dictates most of his artistic decisions. Following this approach, the author eventually found his way to a project called Experimental Lake, a series that is now regarded as one of his most successful projects. Investigating a troublesome topic, these pictures speak of travel, pilgrimage, epiphany and discovery with a simple, selfless stoicism. They are infused with the spirit and beauty of the Experimental Lakes Area (ELA), forcing the viewer to question just how much interfering with nature humankind should allow itself. We would like to note that the Experimental Lake series will be presented at the Stephen Bulger starting with the 1st of April, a show that will be the first solo exhibition of the photographer at this spot.
As his work constantly continues to receive more and more attention, Guillaume had opportunities to exhibit his photographs on both the national and international stage. His art can be found in a number of permanent collections including the ones at the London V&A Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston and the aforementioned Museum of Contemporary Photograph in Chicago. The fact that these prestigious institutions are willing to make room in their collections in order to fit Simoneau's pictures speaks volumes about the skill and talent of this photographer whose art definitely has a bright and interesting future, one that will surely be a joy to follow.
This artist is represented by Stephen Bulger Gallery.
Featured image: Guillaume Simoneau - Photo of the artist - Image courtesy of the photographer
All images © the artist / Courtesy Stephen Bulger.