• Happening Now

P.O.R.N. (Portrait of Restless Narcissism)

Photo: Lapointe/Ross

P.O.R.N. (Portrait of Restless Narcissism) STO Union (Farrelton, QC) in co-production with Carte Blanche (Quebec, QC)

for mature audiences only/18+ years

As the natural world burns, many retreat to digital landscapes.

Nadia Ross and Christian Lapointe, both known for their artistic visions and unique creations, created a searing portrait of the objectification and commodification of our contemporary relationships. The production uses the digital tools available online to create a live split-screen, behind which two isolated protagonists sit like VJs at their stations, running the show. Through instant messages, images, texts, emoticons, videos and music they meet online, interact, then hook up. In an intricate ballet of reality and fiction, the pair reach porn’s dead end in isolation.

Like Narcissus mesmerized by a Pandora box, Lapointe and Ross, using the structures of both narrative and performative theatre, creates a world where every click that they make, in this developing online relationship, is an attempt to unfold the contemporary portrait of who we are: scavengers of the transactional realm of the World Wide Web, exposing the circular mechanisms of pornography: frustration – masturbation – relief as well as the browsing – stealing – appropriating process of the dominant behavior system.


Over the next days, weeks and months, we will be announcing our partners and touring locations when we are given the green light to name the co-producers that are joining forces on this project, along with dates and places that the show will be presented.


The National Creation Fund has come on board to support the creative development of P.O.R.N. (Portrait of Restless Narcissism), a mainstage creation by Nadia Ross and Christian Lapointe of Carte blanche (Quebec, QC). The National Creation Fund is fuelled by funds raised from generous donors to the National Arts Centre Foundation’s Creation Campaign, who believe in investing in Canadian creators.

The initial touring of this new creation will be made possible by the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts’ Canada in Germany initiative. In the year leading up to the 2020 Frankfurt Book Fair—where Canada will be the Guest of Honour—the German arts and cultural scenes will showcase Canadian creativity. This is a unique opportunity to share the diversity of Canada’s artistic, literary and cultural expression with Germany.




Nadia Ross (STO Union) and Christian Lapointe (Carte Blanche) began an intense dialogue following their co-nomination for the 2016 Siminovitch Prize for theatre directors. Both known for their artistic visions and unique creations, this collaboration is a natural extension of their artistic temperaments. Their discussions led them to an ongoing process-based project where they use what they have on hand to explore the web of pornculture.

After a very successful Workshop 1 tour in 2018, P.O.R.N. (Portrait of Restless Narcissism) was in development for 2019 and begins to tour in 2020.

Quebec Association of Theatre Critics 2018 AWARD for BEST ORIGINAL TEXT

In December 2018, P.O.R.N. won the award for best new text from the Quebec Association of Theatre Critics based on the one night workshop presentation under a program that presented works in draft form at Mois-Multi (Recto Verso) in Quebec City. Our team is particularly honoured to receive this prize given the draft form of the text, which is only 5 pages long and in english…from the Association of Quebec Critics.  This led us to realize that the text isn’t really in english at all, it is in some other new language that somehow we’ve all absorbed to different extents, and it is a language that has seeped into everything.

Here is the citation that went with the award:

The text by Lapointe and Ross deals with the obsession with desires that even the virtual world cannot satisfy. This deep web dive takes us into the darkest abysses of a humanity in search of happiness. The game of desire and unfulfilled promises becomes a tragedy in which human beings fall into infinite solitude. This powerful text built from web codes and elliptical syntax highlights the impossible communication, all words dispossessed of their meaning.”  

“Le texte de Lapointe et Ross porte sur l’obsession des désirs que même le monde virtuel ne peut assouvir. Cette plongée dans le deep Webnous entraîne dans les abysses les plus sombres d’une humanité en quête de bonheur. Le jeu du désir et des promesses non tenues devient une tragédie où les humains s’abîment dans une solitude infinie. Ce texte percutant construit à partir des codes du Web et d’une syntaxe elliptique souligne l’impossible communication, tous les mots dépossédés de leur sens.”


CREDITS: Christian Lapointe and Nadia Ross