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Sep 04, 2018
The artwork of Cathy Groulx is exquisite with rich hues of intense colours laid down in dozens of layers of oil paint - the glazing method.
The technique succeeds in drawing the viewer into the scene, like you are there experiencing the intimate quiet serene scenes that Groulx presents to us.
Groulx is a master painter, Ontario Society of Artists member, at the top of her game. I was so thrilled to begin working with Groulx in 2016.
Read more about Groulx as she answers my interview questions.
1. Tell us about yourself; maybe a bit about your upbringing. Where did you grow up?
I was born in London Ontario. I have lived in thirty-five different locations in many different cities, Including Los Angeles, London, Ottawa and Toronto, as my parents moved a lot, and later, so did I!
2. How did your background shape you as an artist?
I suppose that having moved so many times has influenced me, but I am not sure that it has affected my art per say. Perhaps what it has done is open me to travel to other locations to exhibit my work, and enjoy the drive and the landscapes I see along the way.
3. Do you collect anything? What are your hobbies?
I am an avid gardener, and what I collect is plants and shrubs. I have a lot of things squeezed into a small property, that now has not got much grass left. I also enjoy antiques, so surround myself with things that have a history and a story.
4. Where do you produce your art? Home studio? Kitchen?
I have an in-house studio room where I paint and have my work on exhibit on the walls in that room. I collect art, so hang other people's art work that I enjoy around the house. I have been painting for a long time, so there are many paintings coming and going from exhibitions and Galleries, that are stored all over the house!
5. What fascinates or inspires you?
What fascinates me- life- nature-I believe I see beauty in everything.
6. What art form and/or artist is your favourite?
Favourite artist- I love the Impressionists, many of The Group of Seven, John Singer-Sargent. I have also seen some current artists whose work I admire, and they are numerous. I cannot simplify a choice to just one type or style of art or artist.
7. Please give us some insight into your creative process?
I paint from photographic references. I keep my camera with me much of the time, so I can stop and take a photo of something that catches my eye. I print images from the camera, and keep them stockpiled in a box in the studio. I can pull them out when I am ready to start a new painting, and go through them to see what inspires me at that moment. I have a number of easels holding paintings in various degrees of finish.
8. Did you have an inspirational teacher and how did that affect you?
I did have a kindergarten teacher that had us lay outside on the grass and look at the sky. We were to look for a form in the clouds- some sort of thing that we could recognize in the ever changing shapes. I remember I could see a horse. I feel that was likely a pivotal point, teaching me to 'see' .
9. Tell us about the first artwork you sold.
The first art that I sold was a drawing of Big Red, the racehorse. I was sixteen.
10. Is there any main goal that you want to accomplish with your art?
I dream big. I would love to have a piece on exhibit in the AGO or other large institution. I have a seven page CV and am working hard to make my art seen and valued. My mother said I was driven. It is true.
11. Do you have any/ what are your pet peeves related to the art world/market?
Art is all about perception. Who decides which art is of value and which artist should be collected? Many years ago there were people whose opinions mattered. How do I become one of those artists in the mind of the current people who make the decisions? I really wonder at the work that is hung and collected in major Institutions. Why does weird become the norm and the collectible?
12. What are you currently working on? What do you plan to tackle next?
I continue to work on landscapes, but have been experimenting on doing some large scale outer space images of Nebulas. It will likely be a very short term thing, as it definitely has a more abstract feel- even though I am working from photos. I also like to paint close ups of nature, and that is an ongoing choice that has enticed me for years.
13.What can you say about your work that might not be evident to the viewer?
I paint using a glazing technique. It is layers and layers of colour that permits the transparency to make the paintings glow from within.
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