Roy (b.1981) was born in the wilderness of Northern Ontario, Canada. She holds a degree in media studies specializing in photography from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, Canada. Roy is currently based in Paris, France, where she has been exhibiting her work nationally and internationally for over 10 years at such events and venues as Le Bal
, Paris, the Musée Elysée
, Lausanne, The Head On Photo Festival
in Sydney and the Moscow International Photo Biennale
Kourtney Roy's work is bound up in an ambiguous and cinematic image-making that borders the real and the fantastic. Her approach to photography provokes contemplation and reconfiguration of common place subjects via playful revelation of the bizarre and the uncanny. She is fascinated with exploring the boundaries of liminal spaces; whether spatial, temporal or psychological. By using herself as the principal subject in her work, the artist creates a compelling, intimate universe inhabited by a multitude of diverse characters that explore these enigmatic themes.
She has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including the Prix Picto
(2007), Emily Award
(2012), Carte Blanche PMU
(2013), The Prix Elysée Nomination
(2014) and The Canadian Council for the Arts
artist grant (2015). Several books have been published on her work, including Ils pensent déjà que je suis folle
(Editions Filigranes, 2014), California
(Editions Louis Vuitton, 2016) and The Tourist
(Editions La Pionnière, 2020).
Roy has produced several series which all share the artist’s bold and cinematic aesthetic. Staged in laundrettes, motels, supermarkets and various other banal locations Roy creates hyper-realistic images that resemble film stills. Throughout her work Roy plays with ideas of the bizarre and the uncanny, whether it be a lone female figure walking along a deserted road in a vast landscape or a woman photographed through the wing mirror of a car, Roy’s photographs are permeated with an unsettling air. In her work Roy creates familiar still images of stereotyped heroines, using herself as the model Roy invents numerous characters for herself. This is a crucial element to her work, Roy has stated “It’s usually the male gaze, and the woman is the object to be looked at. So the idea was becoming the person who objectifies, but also objectifying myself. I just thought it was interesting to play the dual role.”
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. Kourtney Roy's 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 both glossy paper and film. Roy works extensively as an independent photographer/filmmaker in the art world. 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 and the Pernod Ricard Carte Blanche
in 2018. In 2019 she won best experimental film at the Brest European Short Film Festival
with her dark and dreamy piece, Morning, Vegas
Roy’s work has been exhibited widely in France, but also abroad. She has been seen at the Planche(s) Contact Festival
in Deauville in 2012, The Portraits Festival in Vichy
in 2015 and at Le Bal
in 2014 and a solo show at Paris Photo
in 2018, among other events and venues. Internationally Kourtney Roy’s photography has been featured at exhibitions in China, as well as Italy, Switzerland, The United States, Australia, the Moscow Photo Biennale
in 2017 and at the Incadaqués International Photo Festival
in Spain in 2019.
Roy has also released several publications on her work including an accompanying artist book to Le Bal
’s exhibition Ils pensent déjà que je suis folle
and an artist’s book Enter as Fiction
, both published by Filigrane Editions, as well as Northern Noir
published by Editions La Pionnière. California
is edited by Editions Louis Vuitton and was released in 2016 and her latest publication, The Tourist
, is published by André Frère Editions and was released in November 2020.
Source: Jackson Fine Art