Parallel Lines

The Light in the Darkness – A Contemporary Mythology

Throughout history, Mythologies have provided explanations for Human kind’s existential surroundings through shared visual narratives.This collaborative project between Photographer Marianne Larochelle and multi media artist Jorge-Alfonso Hernandez will explore the practice of modern myth making through a non linear approach, as they meet on a platform to share and create a new mythology informed by the collective subconscious  symbols of our present day chaos. 

We created a custom-made application that mimics the “light paint” process – that has been used in photography since last century – where a live visualisation allows for precise control over the “painting” process. The results of this novel media  keeps an “analog” feel of the silver film, but with much more control and latitude than traditional light painting and the artwork feels like a mix of embodied performance, painting and collage.

The two users can see themselves on the shared canvas – and open/close their “shutter” when pertinent to imprint their light on the shared virtual photographic film. 

The users can control the shutter through a mobile app, or a physical clicker

The final result can be seen as a static picture, but also as a film, showing the progressive addition of light to the canvas, which tells further layers of the story of the “creation” of the piece.

Static Picture

Progressive Video

During the artist’s residence, Marianne (from her isolated, wood-heated cabin in the forest) and Alfonso (from the core of downtown Montreal) will be co-creating an archetypal view of the world’s new reality, in a common virtual canvas. As the weeks go by, the light of old elements will fade out to make room for new ones, a  new canvas starting with the last elements of the previous one, and so on, creating a cadavre exquis with a new Myth of our times unfolding right before our eyes .

Connected at a virtual level, isolated physically.

“The great events of world history are, at bottom, profoundly unimportant… In our most private and subjective lives, we are not only the passive witnesses of our age, and its sufferers, but also its makers. We make our own epoch.” Carl Jung

Support Material

Documenting the Creative Process

The application automatically generates two videos: one illustrating the actual capture of light on the canvas – the other showing the “making of”, combining the state of the creators with the canvas.

Both of the samples below are the direct, un-cut, output of the application.

Canvas Video – sample

Making of – sample

The ending state of a given sequence can be the starting canvas for the next, creating a “Cadavre Exquis” – where older parts disappear as new ones emerge – to create a progressive sequence through the whole residence film

Three to five short films will be built – with different perspectives and approaches – each one being a continuity of the images being built through the weeks, exploring the themes of being together in creation virtually while isolated physically using the moods and present day archetypes that inhabit the current collective of society, illustrating which forces are at play in our society, social media and political climate . 

The videoconference of the creative process can also be documented, in case there’s something worth highlighting in a small documentary

Marianne Larochelle

Artist Statement

My photography is about giving life to the mystery, the unseen.

Through the study of light and shadow, myths, fairy tales, archetypes and the otherworldly exquisite beauty of the dream world, I have spent many years  digging in the lost stories of Humanity. My creative process begins by asking: What myths do we live by these days?

As we are learning to navigate a new digital era ,which offers an explosion of virtual connection yet at the same time exacerbates our physical  isolation ,which stories are shaping the ways in which we relate to others: Not only as a society, but also in our professional relationships, and our personal and family dynamics?  

This  line of questioning has  fueled my artistic process and curiosity about human narratives—both personal and mythical— serving  as a road map for exploring how photography can lead to new forms of awareness.

Through this artistic endeavour I have come to see myself as an  anthropologist of the mind, attempting to understand who we are, in relation to the stories we have been told, and trying to create a new world of personal and collective mythology to inspire us to grow through these challenging times ,by bringing the invisible into the light .

I am looking forward to this amazing collaboration; 2 artists working on the same canvas, virtually connected but physically isolated .Combining  traditional photography technique with cutting edge digital media, redefining the idea of “Togetherness”

Support Material – Marianne Larochelle

CV Marianne Larochelle

Alfonso Hernandez

Artist Statement

Technology as a “magical” tool to inspire, to connect, to enhance emotions and narratives – to touch the deeply human. To connect diverse, apparently disparate worlds.

Art creation has always been part of my daily life, whether it takes the form of music, photography, drawing, dancing, or creating artistic and technological experiences.

I see my work on interactive installations, my personal exploration projects, and my artistic work as part of a continuum.

My engineering toolbelt has enabled me to enhance sound, photography, film, movement, through technology; while my marketing background has allowed me to use these tools in a wide array of industries – enhancing the human experience by combining design, technology and creativity. This palette of skills allows me to create experiences and narratives taking approaches that are often unusual, atypical and surprising.

I believe the world of the subconscious holds the keys of the most powerful and transformative experiences – though the symbolic works of the psyche, dreams, myths, and archetypes – the works of Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung fascinate me.

When I met Marianne, we quickly realized the synergies between our worlds. 

We were lucky enough to experience my light painting software in person, right before the explosion of the COVID-19 pandemic – and we were both very excited to confirm the potential for creating deep, rich, symbolic work together.

In this context, the capability to co-create remotely through the internet is a natural necessity, to transmute crisis into creativity. 

To shed light on the darkness – of a black canvas, of our fears – to create a new world.

Support Material – Alfonso Hernandez

CV – Alfonso Hernandez

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