over here over there

Alain Paiement


Alain Paiement’s over here over there (2009 - 2011) depicts real-life scenes volumetrically, presenting an improbable “bird’s-eye view” perspective. This project in Brookfield Place features a series of photographs covering the light wells located on the ground floor, creating a sensation of looking into the space below. In order to produce these vertiginous interior views, the artist has worked with axonometric projection technology, a 3D modelling software–typically used by architects, animators, and video game programmers–to render perspectives of space without a vanishing point. This effect is nearly unattainable through photography and beyond the limits of perception.

These scenes show people and places in Paiement’s own neighbourhood: apartment interiors, storage spaces, a garage, a rock group studio, his own studio, and other contiguous environments. All are carefully represented and wondrously skewed. Despite the artificiality of his constructions, the chaos within these photographs is never staged. It is simply and objectively documented just as it is “found.” The impossibility of each view combined with its deliberate positioning within this public space implicates viewers as they pass by. These vertigo-inducing images render the surrounding ground and field of vision unsteady.

In the past, Paiement spoke of his work in terms of photographic spatialization and construction. He was interested in systems and procedures, a mapping through perspective that created improbable visions from architectural spaces. This latest work takes his preoccupation one step further by challenging the way we perceive and recognize shape and form. These images unravel the fallibility of perception, exposing how we interpret and give meaning to space.

Presented in partnership with Brookfield Place

Artist Talk→

Curated by Bonnie Rubenstein & Persilia Caton