TWENTY YEARS OF CIEL VARIABLE: Twenty Years of Photography – Jacques Doyon

[Fall 2007]

by Jacques Doyon

This is the first part of our review of twenty years of Ciel variable. It offers an overview of the metamorphoses that the magazine has had over the years as photographic practices evolved, their field of application broadened, they were increasingly recognized by the art world, and their institutional environment changed. Throughout these years, Ciel variable has been an active vehicle for the recognition of photographic practices and the analysis of their aesthetic and societal issues.

Created and produced by a group of unemployed young people and the Collectif de communication Vox populi, Ciel variable was originally a documentary magazine intended to be a “manifesto of the times.” This was behind the metaphor of the title, which also coloured the content of the magazine at the beginning. Ciel variable was first swept along by a desire to speak out. The first three or four issues thus combined social commentary, literary texts, and images by young socially engaged people wishing to express their reality. There were solo portfolios in the first issue, but thematic groupings dominated thereafter. Very quickly, the magazine expanded its format and became a quarterly. With many contributors who were well known or to become so, the magazine was winning awards and its editorial policy gave it a broader readership. Its identity became that of a “thematic photography magazine focused on social information.” It was produced by a large collective of contributors, but the management team was small and changes frequent. By its nineteenth issue, the magazine was on the brink of dissolving since funds were low and the volunteers exhausted.

Then came the opportunity for a change that marked the magazine for many years, during a period when photography was beginning to blossom and be recognized in Montreal. At the time when the first glimmers of Mois de la photo à Montréal were on the horizon, Vox populi took the magazine in hand and refocused it on art photography. Ciel variable became CVphoto – Contemporary photography. The formula of large portfolios, commented on by specialized authors and accompanied by exhibition and publication reviews, was now set. Little by little, the magazine introduced essays, became bilingual, and extended its coverage to Canadian and international works. For about ten years – up to issue 49 –CVphoto evolved and received growing recognition from Quebec, Canadian, and international circles, establishing partnerships with institutions from Quebec and abroad.

In 2000, the magazine regained its independence, although it maintained close ties to its former partners, Mois de la photo and VOX image contemporaine. Still under the name CVphoto, it accentuated the thematic approach, increased the number of contributors, and more systematically covered the Canadian and international scenes, in the same time that it became a full color magazine. Issue 63 marked the return to the name Ciel variable, with a mandate broadened yet again to take account of a wider field of contemporary photography and new image practices. The current makeover is one further step in the affirmation of an open concept of photography as art, medium, and culture.

Here is the list of all the artists and authors who collaborated to the magazine over the years. It gives a quite impressive portrait of these twenty years of photography. In our next issue, we will highlight the contribution of all the people who worked on the production and the development of the magazine, without forgetting the institutions that have supported it financially.

685 essays
350 collaborators
221 featured artists
193 portfolios

Artists :

Jocelyne Alloucherie
Patrick Altman
Nicholas Amberg
Tetsuomi Anzai
Dieter Appelt
Raymonde April
Benoît Aquin
Nobuyoshi Araki
Roy Arden
Anne Arden McDonald
Marc Audette
Jessica Auer
Nicolas Baier
Annie Baillargeon
Claude Baillargeon
Richard Baillargeon
Dominique Baqué
Ian Baxter
Gwenaël Bélanger
Guy Ben-Ner
Hicham Benohoud
Claude-Philippe Benoit
Jean-François Bérubé
Ivan Binet
Pierre Blache
Guy Blackburn
Carl Bouchard
Ginette Bouchard
Marik Boudreau
Constantin Brancusi
Frank Breuer
Matthieu Brouillard
Edward Burtynsky
Geneviève Cadieux
Sophie Calle
Michel Campeau
Bertrand Carrière
Alexandre Castonguay
Alain Chagnon
Melvin Charney
France Choinière
Olivier Christinat
Arnaud Claass
David Claerbout
André Clément
Serge Clément
Lynne Cohen
Sorel Cohen
Robin Collyer
Luc Courchesne
Patrick Coutu
Stéphane Couturier
Marlene Creates
Gregory Crewdson
Donigan Cumming
Hélène Cyr
Carol Dallaire
Michel de Broin
Manon de Pauw
Alain Declercq
Thomas Demand
Stan Denniston
Leo Divendal
William Eakin
Hala Elkoussy
Janieta Eyre
Claudia Fährenkemper
Patrick Faigenbaum
Denis Farley
Rosalie Favell
Fischli and Weiss
Michael Flomen
Joan Fontcuberta
Robert Frank
Robert Fréchette
Johanne Gagnon
Ghenadi Gatev
Yan Giguère
Miki Gingras
Simon Glass
David Goldblatt
Rafael Goldchain
Nan Goldin
Andy Goldsworthy
Douglas Gordon
Rodney Graham
Pierre Granche
Pascal Grandmaison
Veli Grano
Angela Grauerholz
Peter Greenaway
Vera Greenwood
Massimo Guerrera
Pierre Guimond
Sunil Gupta
Clara Gutsche
Sadko Hadzihasanovic
Toni Hafkenscheid
Linda Dawn Hammond
Ross Handler
Adad Hannah
Arni Haraldsson
Isabelle Hayeur
Michel Hébert
Karen Henderson
April Hickox
P. M. Hoblargan
Bettina Hoffman
Vid Ingelevics
Geoffrey James
André Jasinski
Nicole Jolicoeur
Louis JoncasAlban Kakulya
Ruth Kaplan
Phyllis Katrapani
Daniel Kieffer
Holly King
Thomas Kneubühler
Katherine Knight
Wanda Koop
Randy Koroluk
Manon Labrecque
Paul Lacroix
Guy Lafontaine
Alain Laframboise
Michel Lamothe
Maryse Larivière
Nikki S. Lee
Lucie Lefebvre
Eileen Leier
Jean-Philippe Lemay
Emmanuelle Léonard
Laura Letinsky
Ron Levine
Linea di Confine
Herbert List
Paul Litherland
Jennifer Long
Paul Lowry
Ken Lum
Louis Lussier
Kelly Lycan
Arnaud Maggs
David Maisel
Chris Marker
André Martin
John Max
Scott McFarland
Duane Michals
Franck Michel
Yann Mingard
Jean-Luc Moulène
Vik Muniz
Antoni Muntadas
Marie-Jeanne Musiol
Shirin Neshat
Liza Nguyen
John Oswald
Alain Paiement
Horacio Paone
Robert ParkeHarrison
Roberto Pellegrinuzzi
Robert Pelletier
Marian Penner Bancroft
Manuel Pina
Bernard Plossu
Catherine Poncin
Marisa Portolese
Normand Rajotte
Ramon Ramlochand
David Rasmus
Sylvie Readman
Xavier Ribas
Frances Robson
David Rokeby
Georges Rousse
Mark Ruwedel
Jason Salavon
Chuck Samuels
Klaus Scherübel
Eugénie Schinkle
Leonard Schlichting
Michael Schreier
Yinka Shonibare
Michael Snow
Cheryl Sourkes
George Steeves
Jana Sterbak
Ken Straiton
Andrea Szilasi
Gabor Szilasi
Fiona Tan
Marc Tessier
The Atlas Group and Walid Raad
Diana Thorneycroft
Larry Towell
Ève K. Tremblay
Howard Ursuliak
Javier Vallhonrat
Ruud van Empel
Bill Vazan
Cylla von Tiedemann
Josef Wais
Scott Walden
Jeff Wall
Chih-Chien Wang
George Webber
Krzysztof Wodiczko
Alexa Wright
Erwin Wurm
Jin-Me Yoon
Mike Yuhasz
Anne-Marie Zeppetelli
Carl Zimmerman
Iva Zimova

Auteurs :
Barry Ace
Serge Allaire
Yvonne América Truque
Tetsuomi Anzai
Benoît Aquin
Gilles Archambault
Jean Arrouye
Olivier Asselin
Marc Audette
Stéphane Baillargeon
David Balzer
Éric Barbeau
Michel Barette
Michel-Julien Barrette
Pierre Beaucage
Daniel Béland
Denis Bélanger
Jean-François Bélisle
Guy Bellavance
Yves Bellavance
Anne Bénichou
Claude-Philippe Benoit
Danielle Bérard
Serge Bérard
Christine Bernier
A. Mekki Berrada
Gilles Bibeau
Pierre Blache
Marcel Blouin
Marcello Bluini
George Bogardi
Yves Boisvert
Vincent Bonin
Émile Boudreau
Pierre Bourgault
Jean-Pierre Boyer
Michel Brault
Reinhard Braun
Christopher Brayshaw
Paul Breton
François Brunelle
Hélène Brunet Neumann
Lucie Bureau
Colin Burnett
Sophie Calle
James D. Campbell
Michel Campeau
Sylvain Campeau
Anna Carlevaris
Bertrand Carrière
Anne Cauquelin
Jean Cédras
Carlo Chacal
Stéphane Chagnon
Bruno Chalifour
Paul Chamberland
Benoît Chaput
François Charron
arie-Ève Charron
Michel Chartrand
André Clément
Serge Clément
Susan Close
Michèle Cohen Hadria
Emmanuelle Colbert
Patrick Coppens
Bianca Côté
Mario Côté
Jennifer Couëlle
Maxime Coulombe
Marie-Lucie Crépeau
Pierre Crépo
Lyne Crevier
Jacques Cuerrier
Francine Dagenais
Gérard Dansereau
Robert Daudelin
Gary Michael Dault
Anite de Carvalho
Ariane Noël de Tilly
Octave Debary
Hélène Denoncourt
Louise Déry
Christine Desrochers
Nicole Desrosiers
Pierre Dessureault
Éric Devlin
François Dion
Jean Doré
Jacques Doyon
Peter Dubé
Philippe Dubois
Sylvain Dubois
Patrice Duhamel
Elitza Dulguerova
Michel Dumas
Marie-Claude Dupont
Régis Durand
Denyse Durocher
Peter Duthie
SB Edwards
Robert Favreau
Marc Favreau (Sol)
Mariona Fernandez
Nicole Filion
Dominique Fontaine
Guylaine Fortin
Lucien Francoeur
Marie Fraser
Guy Fréchette
Robert Fréchette
Jessica Fung
Michel Gagné
Daniel Gagnon
Emmanuel Galland
Anne-Marie Garceau
David Garneau
Christian Gattinoni
Christine Gauthier
Robert Gautier
Alain Gerbier
Stephanie Gibson
Nicole Gingras
Jacques Godbout
Manon Gosselin
Robert Graham
John K. Grande
Jacques Grand’maison
Veli Grano
Claire Gravel
Reesa Greenberg
Pierre Grimard
Catherine Grout
Massimo Guerrera
Charles Guilbert
Pierre Guimond
Projet Habritus
Mona Hakim
Petra Halkes
Louis Hamelin
Pierre Harel
Sharon Harper
Sara Hartland-Rowe
Michel Hellman
Emmanuel Hermange
David Hopkins
Juliet Hotbridge
Daniel Hubert
Yves Huneault
Vid Ingelevics
Marie-Josée Jean
Bernard Jeay
Nicole Jolicoeur
Serge Jongué
Randolph Jordan
Pierre Juteau
Alban Kakulya
Sonia Kaleva Anghelova
Leo Kandl
Michelle Kasprzak
D. Kimm
Katherine Knight
Adriana Kolar
Paul Labrèche
Michaël LaChance
Dany Laferrière
Jean-Marie Lafortune
Alain Laframboise
Michèle Laframboise
Hamid Laidaoui
Sylvie Laliberté
Bernard Lamarche
André Lamarre
Niki Lambros
Valérie Lamontagne
Martha Langford
André Laplante
Michel Lapointe
Suzie Larivée
Jean-Pierre Latour
Yam Lau
Robin Laurence
Julie Lavigne
Vincent Lavoie
Jean-François Leblanc
Gaston Leclerc
Michel Lefebvre
Robert Legendre
Marc J. Léger
Elisabeth Legge
Henry Lehmann
Jean-Claude Lemagny
Emmanuelle Léonard
Steve Leroux
Denis Lessard
Lucie Létourneau
Claudine Lévesque
Luc Lévesque
Robert Lévesque
Christian Liboiron
David Liss
Jacques Lizée
Éric Loiseau
Karen Love
Jocelyne Lupien
Kelly Lycan
Barbara Mac Quarrie
Robert Mailloux
Chantal Mantha
Guy Marchamps
Michou Marchand
Jean-Claude Marsan
André Martin
J.A. Martin
Pauline Martin
Jacques-Alexandre Mascotto
Brian Massumi
Céline Mayrand
Shauna McCabe
Katy McCormick
Dayna McLeod
Guy Ménard
Sophie Mendelsohn
Elizabeth Menon
Robin Metcalfe
Eric Michaud
Franck Michel
Alice Ming Wai Jim
Yann Mingard
Jeannie Mippigaq
Christian Mistral
Johanna Mizgala
Annie Molin Vasseur
Simonne Monet-Chartrand
Hélène Monette
Marie-Hélène Montpetit
Sandra Moreau
Diane Morin
Pierre Morisset
Raymon Muir
Benoît Munger
Sharon Murray
Marie-Jeanne Musiol
Lisanne Nadeau
Michel Nevert
Eva-Marie Newmann
Natalie Olanick
Derek Oss
Alcide Ouellet
Michel Ouellet
Lucie Ouimet
Alain Paiement
Horacio Paone
Suzanne Paquet
Viviane Paradis
André-Louis Paré
François Paré
Nathalie Parent
Sylvie Parent
Judith Parker
Pavel Pavlov
Hélène Pednault
Sonia Pelletier
Maria Antonella Pellizzari
Charles Perraton
Pierre Perrault
Michel Peterson
Nathalie Petrowski
François Piazza
Robert Pilon
Jean-Marc Piotte
Janette Platana
Catherine Pomparat
Serge Provost
Yves C. Quenneville
Marc-Olivier Rainville
Eduardo Ralickas
Ramona Ramlochand
Élizabeth Recurt
Hubert Reeves
Victor Regalado
Albertine Rémilleux
Annette Renaud
Xavier Ribas
Ryan Rice
Hélène Rioux
Marcel Rioux
Dominique Ritchot
Régine Robin
Eugénie Robitaille
Frances Robson
Jean-Claude Rochefort
Dieter Roelstraette
Danielle Roger
Christine Ross
Jean-Hugues Roy
Mark Ruwedel
Gilles Saint-Pierre
Gregory Salzman
Hélène Samson
Félix-Antoine Savard
Leonard Schlichting
Danielle Schwartz
Cheryl Simon
Kim Simon
Nicole Simon
Guy Sioui Durand
Johanne Sloan
Jean-François Somain
Cheryl Sourkes
Ken Straiton
Will Straw
Jordan Strom
Chen Tamir
Louis-Joseph Tassé
Kevin Temple
Marc Tessier
Georges Théberge
Claude Thibault
Ann Thomas
Cyril Thomas
Serge Tisseron
Colette Tougas
Francine Tougas
Danielle Tremblay
Pierre-Michel Tremblay
Dot Tuer
Howard Ursuliak
Hélène Vanier
Jean-Émile Verdier
Jean-Pierre Vidal
Milder Villegas
Sophie Voillot
Scott Walden
Krystel Wallet
Petra Watson
E. Zoé Welsh
Karen Wong
Jessica Wyman
Nicolas Zavaglia
John Zeppetelli
Russell Zeziere
Maria Zimmermann Brendel