The exhibition Juneau Retro — The Geometric Years: 1955–1980 brings together an extensive selection of acrylics on canvas and gouaches on paper representative of the approach taken by Denis Juneau, an artist belonging to the second generation of the Plasticien movement. The works on view feature rhythmical, simple and precise geometric forms, bright, flat colours, an economy of means and a grid-like division of the pictorial space. In them can be seen the formal preoccupations that marked an entire era, not only in the area of the fine arts, but also in the world of design and advertising. Indeed, they are indicative of an aesthetic that is still at work in our contemporary visual universe.
Juneau Retro offers a new view of Denis Juneau’s art by spotlighting a body of work that grew out of his involvement in graphic and industrial design. Following his training in those fields in Novara, Italy from the summer of 1954 to the fall of 1956, Juneau designed a number of advertising posters, logos, and objects, as well as commercial packaging, mainly during the 1950s. Through the presentation of this little-known side of his career, the exhibition will show the influence of modern design on Juneau’s practice of painting.
A booklet with an essay by Marc H. Choko will accompany the exhibition Juneau Retro — The Geometric Years: 1955–1980. Mr. Choko is a professor in the School of Design at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM), where he has taught since 1977. He also acted as a director of research for the Centre for Urbanization, Culture and Society at Montréal’s Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) from 1985 to 2005, and headed UQAM’s Design Centre from 1999 to 2008.