Multidisciplinary artist Claude Lamarche has been active in Quebec and internationally for more than three decades. He is known for having co-founded the experimental-art studio INTER X SECTION in Montreal in the late 1970s, and for having participated in numerous art-performance and sculpture events, including the Symposium international de sculpture environnementale de Chicoutimi in 1980, Les Cent jours d’art contemporain du CIAC in 1986, and the first Festival international d’art-performance de Porto in Portugal.
Claude Lamarche’s sculpture is situated in the garden in front of the entrance to Bibliothèque L’Octogone. This monumental artwork is in the form of a giant yellow-coloured steel arrow that points toward the ground and sinks into a concrete pyramid. On the upper end of the rod is hooked another, smaller, red-coloured arrow. This arrow is curved providing a contrast with the rigidity of the main thrust and creating tension between the two principal elements. This grouping gives the impression that the smaller arrow is being used to straighten the larger one, which is leaning at a 70-degree angle.
The objective of Signal dans l’espace is to signify the mark of the creative gesture in the environment. Self-reflexive, this artwork thus points to itself, as well as pointing to an important cultural site within the city: the library. Thus, it is a comment by the artist on culture: “This work signals the need to encourage creative acts and freedom of expression” is inscribed on a small plaque attached to the concrete base. The rough craftsmanship of the materials and the theme of the signage are both recurrent in the artist’s public works of art.