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Yves Tessier
From January 18th 2008 to February 23rd 2008
Situations récentes | Recent Situations

Yves Tessier’s "Recent Situations" series comprises a body of work painted between 2001 and 2007. The casein on wood panels—that have been cut to explore a multitude of small scales—are hung fairly close together to suggest that everything we see is happening simultaneously. While two men shake hands in front of a Mosque in Central Harlem, four couples in Japan are involved in intimate group activity. And somewhere in the privacy of the bedroom, a man, a woman and a dog prepare for a good night sleep.

Ordinary, peculiar, at times humorous, these situations of people in everyday life are painted in a style spun from a vast pool of influences, beginning with early Antiquity—Etruscan, Minoan, Egyptian and Assyria—to Chinese and Aztec, then from ukiyo-e to comic book and then back 30,000 years to cave painting. As Yves Tessier states : “When I first descended into those Etruscan burial chambers adorned with frescos, I was stricken by the simplicity of their style—bold, sensitive line contours filled with colour, and no shadows. Thus began a fascination for the many pictorial cultures having this trait in common. Yet it took years for me to adopt this approach—I thought I would loose my personality if I gave up shading. Once I finally gave it up, I did loose it but it opened up everything. The simplicity enabled me to put more life into my subject. So instead I gained the playful identity of an actor who can adapt different character roles. Except that, in the painted picture, it’s not only a character—it can be a tree, a building, many pedestrians, a floor, a background or a thing—all acted out by me. And there enters complexity.”

Originally from Montreal, Yves Tessier has been living and working in Central Harlem, New York, since 2001. Tessier began exhibiting his work in 1976 and has participated in many group shows since, including : Lush (curators, Michael Merrill and Andrea Szilasi), at Articule, 1995; Systems of Exchange, The Toronto / Montreal exchange arts projects, Toronto, 1994; Peinture (curator, David Blatherwick), Clark, 1991; Small Works : Aspects de la peinture montréalaise contemporaine, Pavillon du Québec, Montreal, 1982, and Forum 76 (curator, Leo Rosshandler), Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal, 1976. His last solo exhibition was held at Galerie Local 906, in Montreal, in 1995.

Bibliographie
- Crevier, Lyne, «Instants Volés», Ici, 31 janvier - 6 février 2008, p.41.
- Delgado, Jérôme, «Une Manif et bien des doublés», Le Devoir, 19-20 janvier 2008, p.E11.
- Delgado, Jérôme, «Le Monde en 80 Tableaux», Le Devoir, 26-27 janvier 2008, p.E6.
- Redfern, Christine, «Good things, small packages», Mirror, 24-30 janvier 2008, p.46.
- Tousignant, Isa, « Arts 2007 Winter Cultural Guide, Hear Them Roar Galleries and Museums are just getting started», Hour, 10 janvier 2008, p.14.