Les graminées du jardin Saint-Sulpice
Presentation of the artworkComposed of several stainless steel elements, this installation, a tribute to the life and work of Berthe Louard, conveys the theme of cooperation. Designs of the details of food plants (oats, wheat, barley, buckwheat, hay clover, corn, and millet) have been cut out of eight steel plaques. The designs are a reference to the foodstuffs available at the La Familiale cooperative and in the gardens of the Saint-Sulpice estate. In this way, the artist, Linda Covit, highlighted the contribution of the Montréal food cooperative that Louard founded. Covit selected the plants from a list of edible products grown and sold on the island of Montréal in 1936. The installation expresses the very fundaments of generosity and cooperation that guided Louard’s life and work. The steel plaques are set out between a flowerbed and a group of trees in the park that bears the name of this remarkable woman.
Associated eventsBerthe Chaurès-Louard was born in Verviers, Belgium, and arrived in Montréal in 1920. An activist who changed the history of the Saint-Sulpice estate, Louard was the founding president of the first food cooperative in Québec, La Familiale, in 1938, which later offered housing to low-income Montréal families. Louard also founded the Guilde de la Familiale, a group of women responsible for activities and recreation, and a committee concerned with the housing conditions of the cooperative’s members. She also created the Fonds de prévoyance to assist families in difficulty. Louard received an honorary doctorate in social sciences from the Université de Montréal in 1947 and the Ordre du mérite coopératif in 1949. She died in Montréal in 1968.
Since 1975, Linda Covit has created numerous art interventions presented in Canada and abroad. Her artworks address issues of nature, the environment, and peace. Water Garden, integrated with the Water Centre building in Calgary, and Shangri La Stripe Room, at the Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center in Orange, Texas, are among her most recent creations.
Awards and honours
- Prix d’Hydro-Québec, Florexpo, 1988
- Jardins québécois, pour sa sculpture Un ailleurs lointain., 1988
- Prix aménagement, Les Arts et la Ville et Télé-Québec, pour Give Peace a Chance, 2012