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Théâtre de l'Œil was established in Montreal in 1973. Its founders, André Laliberté and Francine Saint–Aubin – in addition to Jocelyn Desjarlais, who joined them for their first show – had all worked with Les Marionnettes de Montréal under the direction of Micheline Legendre. From the outset, Théâtre de l'Œil was interested in different puppetry techniques – rod puppets, hand puppets, shadow theatre, masks – and particularly bunraku. Situating puppet theatre within the realm of "visual theatre", Théâtre de l'Œil has undertaken ongoing research in this direction, culminating in the company's production of Le Porteur (1997): a visual poem without words. Its productions, aimed primarily at young audiences, are presented throughout Canada and abroad, on four continents. Théâtre de l'Œil is the recipient of several prizes, including two UNIMA–USA Citations of Excellence in the Art of Puppetry for Le Porteur (2005) and for Zoé perd son temps (1997). Actively engaged in the development and recognition of theatre for young audiences, in 1982 André Laliberté worked with two other companies towards the founding of la Maison Théâtre, an important centre in Montreal for youth–oriented theatre.