Figures du temps

Denise Desautels, Monique Jean

Figures du temps has been performed in Berlin, Brussels, Montréal, Oslo and Toronto…

What to do with the real? How to create an aesthetic space that rejects amnesia?

Crossroads and collisions of individual events and of public events. A suite that attempts to deal with “the individual human life, small, poor, defenseless but magnificent” as Tadeusz Kantor said. “It is only in this human life that truth, sanctity and grandeur are maintained today. We must save them from destruction and oblivion. Save them from all the powers of this world.”

Media flow, poetry/resistance, disappearance of Morse code: February 1999.

In … et les déchets qu’on brûle (… and the refuse we burn), the texts are by Denise Desautels, taken from Cimetières: la rage muette (Éditions Dazibao, Montréal, 1995). With the processed voices of Marie-France Marcotte, Angèle Laberge, Marc Mercier. And contrabass improvisations by Joëlle Léandre.

[English translation: Sean Ferguson, Traçantes]

Figures du temps [Figures of Time] was realized with support from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA), Media Arts Section, and of the PRIM Media Arts Centre in 1998-99 at the composer’s studio. The first two movements were premiered on February 17, 1999, during a solo concert as part of the Rien à voir (5) concert series presented by Réseaux in Montréal, and the third movement premiered on May 5, 2001, on the program L’Espace du son produced by Mario Gauthier at Radio-Canada’s Chaîne culturelle.


  • February 17, 1999, Rien à voir (5): concert solo + carte blanche, La Chapelle — scènes contemporaines, Montréal (Québec)


Figures du temps (1998-99), 23:15
stereo fixed medium




Date Work Program
January 5, 2018 Monique Jean / Denise Desautels, Figures du temps (1998-99), 23:15 Crack O’Dawn / KPFA 94.1 FM (USA)