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Anne Thériault is originally from New Brunswick and now resides in Ottawa\Aylmer.

As a trained psychologist, she is intimately acquainted with the complexity of human experience and finds therein-unlimited inspiration. Her artistic training is ongoing and mostly through workshops and mentorships. The abstract work is grounded in emotions, relational dynamics, and states of being that she has experienced or witnessed and is rendered through acrylic, oils, encaustic, resin, pastel, charcoal, pencils, and spraypaint.

In attempting to elicit an empathic response from the viewer she sprays, splashes, scratches, burns, wipes, draws, covers and reveals. Each painting renders an experience of awareness that departs from the grounded self.

Art Education

Has studied with the following artists and institutions (Ottawa & Gatineau):

Liette Parent, La Petite École des Arts, David Kearn, Ottawa School of the Arts, Christina Lovisa, Leya Evelyn, Orange Gallery, Danielle Paré, Jacques Desgagnés, Diane Fontaine, Jacques Boissinot, Danielle Doucet, Nicole Geoffroy, Barry Seguin, Susan Ukkola, Mary McGuire, Mary Pfaff -independent professional artists.

Recent Exhibitions

Solo: Character driven Beauty/Italian Perspectives, Espace René Provost, (November, 2019) States of Altered Consciousness, Galerie Old Chelsea, (November, 2019) Mould vs. Unfold, Gigspace Art Gallery, (September, 2019) Character-Driven Beauty, Galerie Old Chelsea (May-June, 2018) L’alambic, Hull, Qc.(2018), Green Door (2017),  Vitalia (2017), Bluebird Café, Ottawa (2016),

Collective: Rendez-vous des Arts Contemporains, Québec (July, 2019) Selections, Arts Network Ottawa, Trinity Gallery, Shenkman Art Center, Ottawa, Ontario (2018) Open Gallery, Montréal Art Center, Griffintown, Montréal (2018) Gallery Erga, Exposition Esthète, Curator Véronique Boissono, Montréal (2018) Galerie Art en bar, Duo with Johanne Sylvestre, Curator Marie-Ève Marois, Hull (2018) Centre des Arts La Fab Arts Centre, Annual members show, Chelsea, Québec (2016, 2017, 2018). Aylmer Art Council, Annual Show- Espace Pierre Debain, Aylmer (2016, 2018) Aylmer Arts Council –Spring Exhibition (2016, juried)

Collections

Private collectors:

Grand-Falls, Fredericton, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Toronto, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Vancouver, B.C. & Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Gatineau, Chelsea, Cantley, Montreal, Québec, Canada

Michigan, U.S.A

Cabarete, Dominican Republic

Oslow, Sweden, Munich, Germany

Artistic Residencies

La Macina Dei San Cresci, Grève-in-Chianti- Italie (May-June, 2019)

Can you tell us a little about how you got to where you are now?

Anne: Approximately 8 years ago, I wanted to purchase a painting from an artist friend. I loved his abstract work. I was not able to make that happen and at some point, I thought well, I will try to make one myself. How hard can that be?  VERY!

But I fell in love with painting and expressing myself that way. In a very short period of time, I just needed it. Since then, I took multiple courses, workshops and residencies. I exchange with artist friends and view artworks and artists at work live and online. I am fully immersed in that magical world/subculture.

 

Gets Found

Are you currently exploring your art career full time or part-time? If full time, what did you leave behind to pursue your art career? If part-time, what do you do in your “day job”?

Anne: I am presently exploring artwork part-time. However, my day job- being a counselling psychologist and professor of psychology- is very focused on expression and also is partly art (and partly science, in my view). I work in my studio one or two days a week diligently.

You scratch my surface 2019

How would you define your visual style?

Anne: I  would say big, bold, messy and emergent. I love spontaneity and accidental beauty. My work is playful and modern. The most common comment I get is that my paintings are joyful.

Au clair de ta lune 2018

How has your work developed since you began and how do you see it evolving in the future?

Anne: I like to think I am becoming more loose, more sophisticated. I think I have more courage in the sense of not being afraid to ruin things and allowing myself to just push the work to its limit. I definitely have more confidence. If I allow things to unfold, I will end up with a painting that I love sooner or later.

La parade

You have a very distinctive color palette. Any particular reason?

Anne: I do love modern and decomposed paintings so black and white are often involved. Also, I paint wet on wet so colors get mixed on canvas as I go. Because of this I am careful to use colors that won’t look muddy when crossed and I also have lots of grays.  I select a color on the fly often but often end up with magentas, oranges, and yellows. I naturally gravitate towards those.

Soul Mate

Tell us a bit about your process and what environment you like to work in?

Anne: My process is both organized and disorganized. I do go to my studio on regular days and at regular times. I put on some vocal jazz. I select the canvas or supports I will work on and then have a mini-plan, a starting point. Then I usually make some marks on the canvas with different kinds of pencils, pastels etc..I take out my black and white and a few colors.

Then .. all hell breaks loose. The music, the mood, the work itself kind of takes over and I follow my impulses and what feel driven towards in terms of colors and utensils- I have all kinds of stuff- brushes, knives, sprays, waxes, mediums, paint in all types of densities, stencils etc.. I just go nuts! Some would describe it as a zone you cross into and I agree with this.

I like to work alone in my studio which is small but with a beautiful view of the lake.  When I am finished, usually after six or seven hours, I emerge from there in a peaceful daze. I am a little bit outside of myself for the rest of the day.

Mindblown 2018

What challenges have you faced in your creative work?

Anne: The biggest challenge is finding enough time. I like to work for many hours in a row so I need a full day to really get into it.

Cloud walker 2019

What are you inspired by? Where do you go for inspiration?

Anne: I am inspired by the human spirit. My work as a psychologist, my poetry and my art are all focused on emotion, experience and expression. Through musings, music and introspection I connect to the wanderings of my soul and project that outwards. I find inspiration often in being present to my own being.

Play hard 2018

What are some of the artists that you admire? Why?

Anne: I love Wendy Mc Williams, Robert Burridge,  and Aisha Kahn among others. These are contemporary artists. I admire their originality, their vibrancy and their capacity to go wild.

Free spirit 2019

Do you have any words of advice for new artists?

Anne: Just keep going.  Show up and paint. Don’t get sidetracked by critiques, rejections, low sales, low inspiration, self comparisons and other traps like that.  Stay grounded in the pure pleasure of creating,   of being entirely yourself.

To learn more about Anne and her work, please visit her:

1. Website

2. Website

3. Instagram

Thank you!

One Reply to “An Interview with Anne Thériault”

  1. Loved see all your vibrant artwork, Anne, and found the interview really interesting. Your passion for your art is inspiring. Makes me think about my easel sitting all quiet and alone upstairs as I sit here during the pandemic lockdown. Mike and I have been busy with projects – in and outside the house – we’ve been learning new music together. But my easel still sits there empty – think I’m feeling intimidated by it. You’ve given me the encouragement to just jump in and take a chance!

    Doesn’t look like we’ll be meeting up at Charleston Lake this year – although we have a reservation for the St Jean Baptiste weekend as usual (think Dave and Candice do too). Fingers crossed the campground will be open to visitors. Stay safe – stay healthy – say hi to Alain for us – and keep creating! You’re amazing!

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