Art, fashion and cultural heritage steal the spotlight in Montreal
Montreal is a fashionable city whose diverse artistic community annually brings to life thousands of note-worthy collaborative projects that reflects the culture and heritage of its populace.
Gen’s Delights had the privilege to recently attend several events with a heavy focus on the arts: The annual Montreal Chinese Hospital Benefit Gala that showcased the beauty of Chinese Culture, two stellar days of Fashion Preview that highlighted the creations of local Quebec designers and RAW Montreal that supports a wide variety of local artists.
I also had the chance to interview multidisciplinary artist Alain Francoeur whose words will certainly set your creative wheels in motion!
*** Enter to win: Answer the question at the end of the article by leaving your reply in the comments section below for your chance to win an exclusive art print mirror by Alain Francoeur !
Montreal Chinese Hospital Foundation Benefit Gala:
The Montreal Chinese Hospital Foundation Ball is undoubtedly the most coveted event of the Chinese and Asian community, allowing professionals and businesses to develop strong business relationships while supporting the needs of residents of the Chinese Hospital of Montreal.
The over 600 guests in attendance, including elected mayor of Montreal Denis Coderre and several other personalities from the Chinese Canadian social, political and business world, participated in this signature evening that shone a spotlight on Chinese heritage and culture.
Guests enjoyed a festive champagne cocktail party with an array of Asian food specialties including Sushi and Tiger Prawn shrimp.
For the main event in the grand ballroom, amid speeches presided over by chairs Selena Lu and MCHF president Martin Liu, attendees enjoyed a set, three course veal menu while learning about the Legend of the Monkey King, viewing a traditional Lion Dance by Jimmy Chan ‘s “Montreal Chan Lion Dance Club” and bidding for exclusive items in the live auction such as for a sparkling Ecksand diamond ring!
However, the definite highlight of the evening was a stunning Chinese couture fashion show presented by #groupsensationmode with unique fashions inspired by centuries of Chinese history with a surprise guest model appearance by NHL’s own #GeorgesLaraque !
To learn more about the activities and up-coming events of the Montreal Chinese Hospital Foundation , please visit their Facebook page and website : http://mchfoundation.ca
Fashion Preview 8thedition.
Looking to revamp your wardrobe or just searching for inspiration?
Founded in 2014 by Emanuela Lolli, Fashion Preview is the bi-annual, glamorous, three day fashion event that showcases local Montreal Designers while providing an intimate venue for professionals in the design and fashion realm to network.
This year’s 8th edition was held on the 17-18-19th of October in the agora of le Coeur des sciences UQAM faculty and welcomed models, fashion designers, photographers, buyers and avid fans alike to marvel at the Spring / Summer 2018 collections to hit the runway.
Trends for 2018 included a lot of stripes, patterns, jacket play / layering, lacy dresses, cargo pants, pinkish sparkles and the color white!
Day 1 presenters:
École supérieure de mode
Coquette en soie
LaSalle College | Montreal
Rémi van Bochove
In collaboration with Fashion Preview, the Montreal Fashion Museum had the honor to present a capsule exhibition featuring evening dresses designed by local fashion designers that highlights a retrospective of Quebecois creations ranging from 1940 to 2010. Some of the gowns on display were created, among others, by Christian Chenail and Helmer, who took part in previous editions of Fashion Preview.
For more information on up-coming editions of Fashion Preview, please consult their website:
RAW is an independent arts organization for artists by artists
Their latest event in Montreal, @montreal_raw SAVOR, held at the Rialto Theatre last October 4th, featured Visual Artists, Photographers, Fashion Designers, Musicians, Performance Artists, Accessories, Hair and Make-Up Talents !
The evening was full of live performances, including amazing after party music by Terence Kissner, a fantasy runway show by Designer Narcissé Palace, live body paintings by Maple Henna art, and much more!
In addition there were over 30 talented accessory / Jewelry designers and visual artists present to display and sell their unique crafts.
I had the pleasure of interviewing multidisciplinary visual artist Alain Francoeur.
Originally from Shawinigan, this self-taught artist has produced a wide body of work that ranges from drawings, etching, paintings, woodwork, jewelry making and most recently collage and digital arts, over the span of his 40+ year’s career as a visual artist.
Genevieve:Bonjour Alain, thanks for taking the time to answer some of my questions. I see that you have mastered the art of portraiture, especially in your digital prints that you have for sale here at RAW. How did you develop this unique style? Do you regularly produce work to please / sell to the masses and what / who inspires you?
Alain: Merci Genevieve, as you can imagine, I have never limited myself to one particular style throughout my artistic career. I follow my own creative path and I enjoy letting my imagination run wild while expressing myself through the vivid use of color and abstract montage. My work is always evolving, yet I do not succumb to trends.
I do draw my inspiration and energy from the works of old masters: Dali, Picasso, and Chagall… I like to mix up their various styles into an ‘artistic soup’ that produces something bold, new and modern. My body of art most closely resembles Picasso’s work… A Picasso transformed, but nevertheless, he is the artist that most inspires me.
I think it is also important to mention that I am not an “inspired in the moment artist”. I am a working professional who produces new digital works daily. In the evenings, I regularly work on building and applying decorative collage on wooden frames that I frame my art in. I also dabble in other crafts and I have been working like this for several years.
Genevieve: Did you always find it easy to create? Did you take any art lessons or courses?
Alain: Actually I am dyslexic and school was never my forte. I do have a very particular mindset and even at a very young age, I was drawn to the arts. I made my first sale in June 1970 at the age of 15. In 2020, it will have been 50 years that I have been selling my art! There is even a bilingual biography in the works penned by a great Quebec author. I am after all, one of the older generation of artists who has left their mark on the Quebec art scene.
Genevieve: Who is your main clientele and what are your best sellers?
Alain: Currently my digital portraits are selling quite well and my core buyers have almost always been the 30 to 45 year old affluent buyers who enjoy my interpretations of known characters or symbols in pop culture. Even if I have been in the business for almost 50 years, my work is still pretty wild and underground.
Genevieve: Any last thoughts you like to share?
Alain: Well I have to admit I believe I have the best job in the world! As an artist you sell love to your clients. They buy because they love your work or what your work represents. The nicest thing a critic has said to me is “Alain I wish I could spend a day inside your head”. For me a good comment is the best salary you can get!
Genevieve: Thanks for your time Alain !
To learn more about Alain Francoeur’s work, please visit his website: http://alainfrancoeur.com/
Alain has generously offered a limited edition pocket mirror as a prize. To win it, simply like and share the article and please answer the following question:
“Which visual artist inspires you the most and why ? ”