Elliott Louis Gallery Canadian Fine Art

Jean Paul Riopelle  Bio  ·     ·  Exhibitions:   Guest Speaker October 1, 2004 Madames Brunet-Weinmann and Yseult Riopelle

 Jean-Paul Riopelle was born in 1923 in Montreal, Quebec. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts until 1944, and had his first solo exhibition in 1945. Riopelle was a member of a group of innovative writers and artists in Quebec called the Automatistes, led by Paul-Emile Borduas, which contributed to his liberal thinking in terms of artistic expression. In 1947 Riopelle moved to Paris and became a member of artists known as the Ecole de Paris, a group that included others such as Marc Chagall and Natilia Concharova.

Riopelle's earlier works reflect the Surrealist movement and later his style is reflective of Abstract Impressionism. He is one of the leading exponents internatinallyof non-figurative painting in general and of tachisme or 'action painting' in particular. Riopelle became a Canadian art world icon and received the Order of Canada in 1969, and he died in 2002.

Click on the thumbnails below to view a larger image.

Jean Paul Riopelle - Cap tourmente (I), 1983  (27/60) - click for larger image

Cap tourmente (I), 1983 (27/60)
35 x 25 Inches 
Jean Paul Riopelle - Cap tourmente (G), 1983 (27/60) - click for larger image

Cap tourmente (G), 1983 (27/60)
35 x 25 Inches 
Please email the gallery to view more works by Jean Paul Riopelle.

Jean Paul Riopelle was born in Montréal on October 7, 1923.

While still a student, he became vital to Québec's emerging Automatistes school of painting, with a Surrealistic influence, and challenged the traditional values of Québec's post-war society.  Riopelle was both celebrated and scorned for his radical technique, which sometimes involved dripping or even throwing paint onto the canvas.  But learned critics could see, from the perceived chaos, an artistic sense of order and discipline.

In 1946, Riopelle moved to Paris, where he supported the emerging Tachist movement and its spontaneous approach to abstract expressionism.  He refined his technique with an imaginative use of white space to create an expansive effect. During the early ‘50s, he participated in group shows in France, Italy, Spain, England and Sweden.  From 1954 onwards, he had regular exhibitions at the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York; in 1966, Galerie Maeght in Paris,  he was given a show every two years.

Riopelle also focused on his sculpting talent, culminating with his masterpiece La joute, created
for the 1976 Montréal Olympics.

The list of citations, prizes and honorary degrees awarded to Jean-Paul Riopelle over the past six decades is extensive. Highlights include the 1958 Prix International Guggenheim award and, in 1962, the coveted Unesco prize. Here in Canada, Riopelle’s many honors include the 1973 Philippe Hébert Prize and, in 1975, induction as a Companion of the Order of Canada.

Jean Paul Riopelle died at his home on Îsle-aux-Grues on March 12, 2002.

His paintings, sculptures, and lithographs, treasured by collectors around the globe, enhance the permanent collections of the world’s finest galleries and museums, including New York’s Guggenheim Museum and The Museum of Modern Art, the Galerie d’art Moderne in Basel, Switzerland, the Museum of Modern Art in Brazil, Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario, and Ottawa’s National Gallery.

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