Digital Inkjet on Prospro Paper / Newsprint
Kirouac’s print-based project Papermen raises compelling questions around what constitutes portraiture, who defines community and the value of the art object. After moving to North Carolina from Winnipeg in 2008, Kirouac began to observe (and search out) a new community to connect with, outside the high-art hierarchy prevalent in her new home, still rooted in quiet racial segregation. She found this humanity in an unlikely place, with newspaper ‘hawkers’ who sell the Winston-Salem Journal at intersections around the city. Although different than her in almost every way, she felt compelled to engage and make ‘visible’ these men through an unconventional photo portrait project. Kirouac enlisted a layered process, meeting each paper man at their location, some brief encounters and others that developed into long friendships. Kirouac captured them digitally at their location, expanding this experience through a printing process that merges portrait, subject and the object they sell.