Elective Affinities

Louis Bouvier, Grégory Chatonsky, Michel de Broin, Jean-Pierre Gauthier, Mathieu Latulippe, Dominique Sirois

Works in the exhibition

Galerie Division is pleased to present Elective Affinities, a new exhibition guest curated by Aseman Sabet and featuring works by Jean-Pierre Gauthier, Michel de Broin, Dominique Sirois, Louis Bouvier, Grégory Chatonsky, et Mathieu Latulippe.


Are human relationships subject to the same forces of attraction inherent to chemical reactions?  The question animates Goethe's Elective Affinities, the 1809 novel from which this exhibition draws its title. From the outset, Goethe's narrative sets up an open dialogue between science and sensibility. The author addresses natural attractions, suggests an affective determinism, and examines whether one's decisions can inform passionate impulses.

Expanding on these ideas, this exhibition offers a space to reflect on the links between scientific and affective realms, overlapping notions of utopia, technology, identity, nomenclature and history.  From these various perspectives, the works assume a sensorial charge.  The evocations of flesh and telluric textures coexist with olfactory and haptic references, projecting corporality on anthropomorphic and anachronistic fictions. The principles of association and interrelation are fundamental here. They express themselves within each project, echoing the selective, emotional and combinative mechanisms of memory while stimulating anticipation for the future.

Bringing together these six artists from distinct backgrounds exposes the multiple intersections between their respective practices. In this sense, the concept of elective affinities may recall the means of articulation and composition implicit to both the artist's and the curator's work. By extension, it draws attention to the structural function of the art world's relational fabric.