Galerie D’Este is proud to open its 2017-2018 exhibition season with a fresh look at the work of the plasticien artist Jean-Paul Jérôme (1928-2004). It has been over eight years since the gallery has presented an exhibition dedicated solely to this highly significant painter. Curator Simon Morin has selected over twenty works from the period spanning from 1992-2004. Morin’s analytic selection process invites a reading across media including collage, sculpture and large-scale paintings of this period of over ten years of the artist’s production.
The exhibition title Construction d’espace is taken from an iconic work of Jérôme’s, and provides the throughline: surveying the formal mastery of an artist at the height of his powers during a period of transition for abstract art in Canada. In the works selected for this survey, Simon Morin reflects on Jérôme’s approaches to spatial composition in the diverse media in which he worked. The artist’s well-known and fundamental formal rigour is clearly present, but just as evident, if perhaps less remarked-upon, is an intimate and subtle understanding of pictorial space. Each piece presents a facet of the prolific artist’s practice, right up to the last paintings from 2004, which Morin links to the artist’s work of the 1950s through the ultimate refinement of the forms. Here we see the artist close the circle, returning to an idiom that is purely plasticien.
Jean-Paul Jérôme (1928-2004), is a major Canadian painter and signatory of the Manifeste des plasticiens in 1955. The artist has been the subject of numerous exhibitions as well as a 2003 retrospective organized by the Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent. A master of the plasticien movement, Jean-Paul Jérôme was named to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1978. His works feature in notable private, public, and museum collections such as that of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the National Gallery of Canada, the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and Université de Montréal. His works are represented by Galerie D’Este in Montreal.