New Work

New Work

Jean-Sebastian Denis

From October 3rd to October 28th
Opening October 5th, 2007 from 7-10pm

Jean-Sébastien Denis was born in Quebec in 1970. In 1997 he completed his Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts at Université du Québec à Montréal, where he received top graduate honours by winning the Jacques de Tonnancour Award. His works were already being noticed in several solo exhibitions, such as Étendue (1996) and Remous (1998) at Montreal’s Galerie Lieu Ouest and En avant (1997) at Galerie Le Lobe in Chicoutimi. He has also taken part in numerous group exhibitions, among them Mémoire d’être, the Young Painters of Canada Symposium in Baie-Saint-Paul (1995); and Artifice, held by the Saidye Bronfman Centre of the Arts (1998); and Génération Montréal, Ville peinture, organized in Montreal by Marc Séguin in October 2002. Jean Sebastien Denis is represented by Galerie Simon Blais in Montreal.

Artist’s Statement

“Primarily, I attempt to find direction amidst dispersed elements and unite moving forces through contradictory elements. Until very recently, this tumult was initiated by the body, and the body’s representation. Now, however, only the body’s imprint remains, thus allowing more room for the concept of space. The agitation is then rendered through an accumulated series of controlled gestures circulating between the surface and the depths of this space. From this perspective, both the successive use of divergent approaches and the concern for transparency in preparing the ground/painting are of great importance.

The work’s initial strata are thus dedicated to the volatile and monochromatic world of drawing. Then the rich and colourful substance of paint is applied. The line is the catalyst for exchange between these two media. Layer by layer, the surface becomes more complex and ever more arduous detours come into existence. The thing is sabotaged, false starts are created, networks are disconnected here and reconnected there and, suddenly, you are tampering with chronology. Games of imitation, reflection and distortion are intensified by an incessant back-and-forth effect incongruously uniting principles such as flatness, ‘all over’ and perspective.

Thus, truncated procedures and occasionally opposing visions, through accumulation and mutual contamination, tend to blur stable visual perception. All the more so since the abundance of networks that compel visual instability while simultaneously making the picture’s background visible turn each undertaking into a highly significant act”