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Artist Guy Laramée turns old books into stunning natural landscape sculptures

Guy Laramée is an interdisciplinary artist based in Montreal, Canada, with over 30 years of career creating artworks in such numerous disciplines as theater writing and directing, contemporary music composition, musical instrument design and building, singing, video, scenography, literature, installation, painting and, finally, sculpture.

In his hands, old hard-bound dictionaries and encyclopedias turn into stunningly natural landscapes. Sculptures of mountain valleys, caverns, and uneven terrain carved and painted by hand. But many of them also have man-made constructions and human interventions, such as small temples carved into the rock, rustic houses, and roads.

The erosion of cultures – and of “culture” as a whole – is the theme that runs through the last 25 years of my artistic practice. Cultures emerge, become obsolete, and are replaced by new ones. With the vanishing of cultures, some people are displaced and destroyed. We are currently told that the paper book is bound to die. The library, as a place, is finished. One might ask so what? Do we really believe that “new technologies” will change anything concerning our existential dilemma, our human condition? And even if we could change the content of all the books on earth, would this change anything in relation to the domination of analytical knowledge over intuitive knowledge? What is it in ourselves that insists on grabbing, on casting the flow of experience into concepts?

Guy Laramée
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