Kourtney Roy — Sorry, No Vacancy



Kourtney Roy
Sorry, No Vacancy

Past: September 28 → October 28, 2017

The Catherine and André Hug Gallery is delighted to present the third solo exhibition by Kourtney Roy : “Sorry, No Vacancy”.

“Sorry, No Vacancy” reveals a parallel universe where the realm of the imaginary spreads itself as a fine netting over the peripheral world. The work continues to use Kourtney Roy’s own image as protagonist in a world where external reality is ripe with strange and mysterious juxtapositions and scenarios.

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Kourtney Roy, Sorry, No Vacancy

In “Sorry, No Vacancy”, the artist has melded the ineffable with the vast and isolated spaces of Southwest Texas. The settings for this series are marginal and transient sites; remote highways, abandoned tourist stops, and lonesome towns that seem to hover over the landscape as ghost images of a past time. These sites become the grounds where Roy performs her cryptic rituals of self-transformation.

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Kourtney Roy, Sorry, No Vacancy

The images recall cinematic and collective imagery that spans American screen iconography, mythology and folklore. Their referents are themselves representations, thus creating a spiral of auto-referential signs where images recall other images ad-infinitum; a mirroring structure where the tension between reality and its referent is difficult to delineate. The work creates a link between the real with the symbolic and imaginary, where the possible is reflected in the impermanent states created and recorded meticulously by Roy. In the words of André Bazin, “Making images today…is no longer a question of survival after death, but of a larger concept, the creation of an ideal world in the likeness of the real, with its own temporal destiny”.

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Kourtney Roy, Sorry, No Vacancy

The Canadian photographer Kourtney Roy was born in Northern Ontario in 1981. Intrigued by the possibility of creating a tragic mythology of the self, she conjures an intimate universe pervaded by both wonder and mystery. Her photographer’s eye is drawn to places and settings whose lyrical qualities underscore the sublime banality of everyday life.

Roy’s studies in photography, at Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver and later at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, inspired her to develop her finicky aesthetic, which lends itself particularly well to glossy paper. Partial to self-portraiture and artifice, Roy puts herself in the frame, most often alone, entering into and off-kilter relationship with her surroundings, one that is infused with fantasy. The characters she portrays are sad and impassive, locked into and ordinary existence that seems to recall times long gone by. In their composition, these images are reminiscent of wide-open and irreal spaces or cinematic backdrops, punctuated by the occasional pop culture reference. A shiny world, but shot through with fissures owing to the photographic fondness for not taking oneself too seriously. Instilled with a dark sense of humor, taking their clues as much from the grotesque nature of seemingly placid settings as from the tensions simmering just under the surface, her photographs have garnered many prizes, including the Prix Picto in 2007, The Emily Award in Canada in 2012 and the Prix Carte Blanche PMU/Le Bal in 2013. In 2014 Roy was nominated for the Prix de l’Elysée awarded by the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne.

06 St Germain Zoom in 06 St Germain Zoom out

2, rue de l’Echaudé

75006 Paris

T. 01 43 26 93 75



Opening hours

Tuesday – Saturday, 11 AM – 1 PM / 2:30 PM – 7 PM
Other times by appointment

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Venue schedule