L’imprimerie, centre d’artistes is a production space dedicated to print and photographic practices.
Mission and mandate
L’imprimerie, centre d’artistes is a production artist-run centre dedicated to the practices of print and photography.
The centre supports research and creation in an interdisciplinary and professional development perspective. It welcomes artists and creators from all domains (visual arts, illustration, publishing, performing arts and others) regardless of their ability and provides them with working spaces as well as resources and specialized expertise in digital and analogue printing techniques. Offering residencies, classes, exchanges and assistance tailored to the needs of its community, which spark research and the transfer of knowledge and technical skills, L’imprimerie also favours the use of processes and products that are non-toxic or harmful to the environment, and promotes collaborations with other organizations to improve its activities.
Vision and values
Art begins with its making.
The print is a starting point, an opportunity to experiment, to learn, to think, and to create.
L’imprimerie supports practices that are contemporary, professional, hybrid, evolving, parallel, unruly, collaborative, popular and responsible.
L’imprimerie is inclusive, free-spirited, and committed.
L’imprimerie, centre d’artistes came to life in 2016 with the integration of le Cabinet, espace de production photographique and Atelier Graff. Drawn by the desire to rethink the role and operations of artist-run centres within the cultural ecosystem, these two organizations combined their strengths, knowledge, and resources to set up a new platform for experimentation, research and creation that responds to the needs of creators.
Founded in 1966 by artist Pierre Ayot (1943-1995) with the aim of allowing creators to explore with greater freedom the various printmaking processes, the centre was first known as Atelier libre 848, then Graff, centre de conception graphique (1974), and finally Atelier Graff (2011). As one of Canada’s very first artist-run centres, it adopted from the outset a cooperative structure that promoted exchange of ideas and expertise between creators. Graff’s distinctive inventiveness and avant-garde thinking would endure for over five decades.
Several key events punctuated Atelier Graff’s great history: the production in the 70s of major livres d’artistes (Pilulorum, Graffofones, Corridart 1976, pour la liberté d’expression, etc.); a retrospective at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and the publication of the book Le monde selon Graff for the centre’s 20th anniversary; and the creation of the Prix Graff, which has been awarded to 15 mid-career artists between 1995 and 2011 – artists like Thomas Corriveau, BGL, Michel de Broin and Raphaëlle de Groot. The centre has also curated several exhibitions that secured its key role in the development of printmaking practices, and has created many residency projects for emerging artists (projet insertion) and visiting foreign creators. In 2016, Graff celebrated its 50th anniversary with a bang by joining forces with le Cabinet, espace de production photographique and settling down in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, in one of Ateliers créatifs Montréal’s buildings. In February of 2017, Atelier Graff officially changed its name to L’imprimerie, centre d’artistes.
espace de production photographique
le Cabinet opened its doors in 2012 with the aim of providing personalized and accessible digital printing services to Montreal’s photography community. Thanks to the relentless work of its four artist-founders, Noémie da Silva, Flavia Majlis, Jacinthe Robillard and Catherine Tremblay, the centre quickly became a sought-after meeting place and support structure for artists. Plenty of activities were initiated: thematic evenings (les Consultations), professional classes (the Work in Progress Clinics), artist residencies, and participation in the Salon du Chat des artistes. In 2015, le Cabinet launched the Montreal Emerging Photography Award, and went on to receive the Prix de la relève from the Caisse de la Culture the following year (2016). Above all, le Cabinet has single-handedly managed to offer high-quality professional services, eliciting the recognition and confidence of renowned artists. In 2016, le Cabinet joined forces with Atelier Graff to develop and ensure the perennity of its services.
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Board of Directors
General co-director /
Laurence-Amélie De Coste