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L'imaginaire d'Annick Gauvreau

Do not deny freedom...

Text by Rachel Tremblay for Mozaïk (culture presenter, Vaudreuil-Dorion)

One day, when Annick Gauvreau was returning from her classes, her portfolio under her arm, Jean-Paul Riopelle leafed through its content. Among all her works on paper, he withdrew the only one she had not done in school, the one that was very personal to her, by launching: "I bring this to Paris!" From that precise moment, Annick saw herself guided to what would be the rest of her life: she would always listen to herself and trust her instinct. She was free to do whatever she wanted. Having had the privilege of being raised by freedom-loving parents, Madeleine Arbor and Pierre Gauvreau, both signatories of the Refus global, her artistic development had precedents.

Recently, Annick Gauvreau saw, delighted, forty-eight of her works leave her home to find a new nest at the Musée de Charlevoix. Initially, she planned to donate folk art to this venue. It is said of popular art that it is alive, joyful and colourful. These qualifiers stick perfectly to the artist that is Annick Gauvreau. Annick makes people smile with her fun and playful compositions as well as questions and denounces. She also has the skill of gentleness and respect: she transposes, in her singular language, a tragic event by surrounding it with characters from childhood that she cherishes, such as Tintin, Asterix or Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.

Annick takes a curious and amazed look at religion. She confesses, of course, not having bathed in it. However, her maternal aunts, all impregnated with Catholicism, transmitted her a few notions. Thus, many of her works are nods to this religion, which for her is more a matter of literature and mysticism. Annick likes to tell stories with animals, crosses, virgins, symbolism, without ever using denigration and contempt.

Annick is a sunny woman. From her emanates an enthusiasm for life with a lucid look at the news that disturb, sadden or revolt her. Inhabited by a sense of justice and an obvious social conscience, she is open, generous and welcoming. She cultivates detachment while being in sharing and solidarity. She allows herself to dream and build a reality worthy of her aspirations. Cartesian, organized, one suspects in rubbing shoulders with her that the impeccable is a quest of which she is a proud emissary.

Presented on the mezzanine of the museum, from December 16, 2022 to April 30, 2023.

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