Gélinas, Étienne

Born in Maniwaki (Québec), Etienne Gélinas received college education in “visual and media arts” at the Collège de l’Outaouais in Gatineau, Québec, and later graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in art and design from the Université du Québec en Outaouais in 2006.

He has staged numerous painting and sculpture exhibitions, including at the Galerie d’art Époque, at the AxeNeo7 artist center in the Outaouais, at the Casino Lac Leamy, at the Art-Image exhibition center and Espace Odysée gallery of the Maison de la Culture de Gatineau, at the D’Avignon Gallery in Montréal, at the St-Laurent+Hill Gallery in Ottawa, at the Galerie Montcalm of the Maison du Citoyen de Gatineau, as well as at the Thompson Landry Gallery in Toronto.



Architecture, and the standardisation of mankind’s living space and style, are subjects that fascinate me. These concepts are directly opposed to the valorization of individualism in our society, illustrating in my view, an undeniable paradox.

My research in painting is based on the opposition of different codes: I strive to make the pictorial and scientific worlds coexist in a single space. This is my way of denouncing society as an overly-structured and conformist environment, bound by protocol and in which the notion of intuition and tailored case by case approaches have lost their place. The extremely rigid protocols of our social systems tend to hide the individual within the mass, refusing to perceive him as a unique and sensible being. In the networking era we live in, social networks are a perfect example of standardisation within which each individual seeks to distinguish himself through a pre-designed and mildly customizable interface.

In my work, I integrate sewing patterns, photos of gearing systems, architectural plans, anatomy drawings, and a form of technical drawing involving engraving in paste. These items model and standardize the world around us. In my work, I insert them in a pictorial universe that is born out of providence. The slides, the dripping, the texture and the more random incisions reinforce the opposition with the rigid and precise universe of geometric codes. One can also note an element reminiscent of native art:  solid colour backgrounds, and a fine line between figurative and abstract, that are however approached within a more contemporary context.

The notion of space is central to my approach – it presents itself abstractly through the separation of planes that creates depth in the painting. This depth is accentuated by the network of converging lines that bring us back to the representation of vanishing points and horizon lines. The circle contributes to the notion of space and depth by offering, through perspective, a tunnel effect. The circle within the circle becomes a symbol of clans, targets and objectives, but even more so a symbol of perfection – engraved, encrusted, even scarified in an imperfect world.

The intensity of the iconography that emerges from the mathematical formulae and geometric shapes accentuates the ambiguity between the different levels of planes in my paintings. This confrontation of codes amplifies the emotional impact of the painting and transforms these heterogeneous elements into visual poetry. My work consists in testing the expressiveness of the symbiosis of these two codes, the pictorial and the scientific, while placed within a common universe.

Comp 200

36" x 84"

Mixed media on canvas






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2010 Painting Exhibition, St-Laurent + Hill Gallery, Ottawa (Ontario)

2009  Painting Exhibition, Thompson Landry Gallery, Toronto (Ontario)

2009 Painting Exhibition, Codification élective, Galerie Montcalm, Gatineau (Québec)

2009 Painting Exhibition, St-Laurent + Hill Gallery, Ottawa (Ontario)

2008 Painting Exhibition, Codification émotive, Espace Odyssée, Maison de la culture de Gatineau (Québec)

2007 Painting Exhibition, Codification pragmatique, Casino Lac Leamy, Gatineau (Québec)

2007 Painting Exhibition, Résistances électives, centre d’artistes AXENÉO7, commissioner: Monique Pilon,
Gatineau (Québec)

2006 Painting Exhibition, Époque Art Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)

2005 Painting Exhibition, Art Lois Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)

2005 Sculpture Exhibition, “Hommage à Gilles Carle” Film Festival, commissioner: Agathe Quévillon,
Maniwaki (Québec)


2010  Painting Exhibition, Collection  Loto-Québec, Galerie Montcalm, Gatineau (Québec)

2009  Painting Exhibition, Ottawa City Hall Art Gallery, (Ontario)

2008  Painting Exhibition, d’Avignon Gallery, Montréal (Québec)

2007  Painting Exhibition, Émergence, Art-image Gallery, Maison de la culture de Gatineau Québec)

2006  Painting Exhibition, Jacques-Auger Cultural Center, Gatineau (Québec)

2006 Painting Exhibition, Fabriqué à l’ÉMI, UQO Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)

2006 Painting Exhibition, Art en direct, Gatineau (Québec)

2005 Painting Exhibition, 8 clos, UQO Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)

2005 Painting Exhibition, Art comprimé, UQO Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)

2004 Painting Exhibition, Miniature grandeur nature, UQO Gallery, Gatineau (Québec)