Claire Beaugrand-Champagne questions

What subject matter does Claire Beaugrand-Champagne work with?


She works with people in her immediate environment, images of protests, the Olympic games, the commission of Inquiry on organized crime )CECO) as well as several disasters and a number of well-known personalities.


What was the purpose of her project, ‘People of Montreal’? What was she inspired by?


The main purpose for her was to extend her first project from her neighborhood to all of Montreal.


What venture did she undertake in 1980? How was it different from anything she had done before?


Claire went from South-east Asia to Quebec with an influx of refugees. She was with her journalist sister, Paule. They spent two months in Thailand and another in Malaysia.


What do you think her photo essays say about Quebec society? Which images are the best representations of this?


There are many people who have local businesses in Quebec society to start with. There were also many people from different parts of Quebec with very different or multiple jobs. I think that the photo essay featuring families and furniture was my favourite. She was able to represent different families through chairs or couches. Another photo essay that was able to represent Quebec society would be the local businesses one of the photos of people with particular or multiple jobs. You could see that some of them wouldn’t seem like the kind of person who would want or could have the jobs they have until you actually read the caption. I found that fascinating.


What was your reaction to Beaugrand-Champagne’s first project out of college? Why do you think she chose this setting and what was her process in obtaining her images?


I think that for a first project fresh out of college, this woman had balls and I admire her a lot for doing it. The subject and the issues around it were most likely a hot subject at that time, while not having much light shed on it. Maybe that’s why she chose the setting. Otherwise, I didn’t do much research to find out what her process was, so I wouldn’t know of it on my own.


How does the Beaugrand-Champagne exhibit and the Monkman one incorporate multimedia?


Claire uses journalism and photography in her exhibit. The Monkman exhibit features photography and paintings.


Why do you think photography is the best medium for Beaugrand-Champagne to tell the stories she wants to tell?

Most likely for many of her photo essays, photography helped capture the moment of the interview where she felt that her subjects were completely opening up to her about who they were, trying to capture their personalities. Other times, it was because the moment would not come back, and trying to describe things like the refugees going to Quebec with words alone would not have been enough to fully show what she was witnessing.


How was her photography work paired with her journalistic skills? Please cite specific examples.


Again, the refugee projects best show how she paired both skills. Back then, Claire and her sister were able to pair up both their photography and journalist skills to best represent their article. Other ways she could have done this is with the photos that had people posing with or close to a piece of furniture to sit on. It tells a story and represents them in a fun and unique way, which I think could have also had different interview articles of why they picked the chair or couch and why it can represent them.


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