Press release for immediate distibution

One of our greatest artists in the Galerie Lounge TD

Jean-Paul Riopelle

D’aile en ailes l’élan vital

Montréal, Tuesday, October 4, 2011 - The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal and the Galerie Lounge TD of the Maison du Festival Rio Tinto Alcan are proud to present D’aile en ailes l’élan vital, an extraordinary exhibition of fifty works, many previously unseen, by internationally renowned Québécois painter Jean-Paul Riopelle, from October 13 to December 24, 2011.

An extraordinary man, a unique exhibition: more than fifty works, including twenty previously unseen!

This unique exhibition will assemble more than fifty works by Jean-Paul Riopelle: 27 prints, 3 sculptures in bronze, photos of the artist, a number of articles and objects from his daily painting routine and, above all, more than twenty previously unseen works on paper which Huguette Vachon, his companion, has painstakingly selected in order to share their beauty with all of us.

Jean‑Paul Riopelle (1923-2002)

Jean-Paul Riopelle is one of the few Canadian painters, sculptors and engravers to have carved out an enviable place on the international scene. A passionate man, intensely in love with freedom, he scoffed at conventions and taboos throughout his career. Fiercely independent, he preceded currents and trends, ceaselessly exploring new techniques and new materials, constantly seeking to renew his creative approach, allowing his pictorial language to evolve towards an utterly original aesthetic. Riopelle found his principal source of inspiration in nature, and it would remain his preferred subject throughout his career. For Riopelle, the important thing was never the subject itself, but the mystery it revealed, through which the artist could express himself. He had an inimitable vision of things, and his representation of the real remains remarkable and novel.

“There is no such thing as abstraction, nor representation.
There is only expression, and self-expression means placing yourself in front of things.”

- Jean‑Paul Riopelle

Born in Montreal in 1923, Riopelle studied at the École du meuble, with PaulÉmile Borduas as a teacher. A signatory and advocate of the Refus global manifesto, he settled in France in 1948, where he was privileged to be at the heart of the artistic and intellectual life of the avant-garde. In the ’50s, he and his work soared to triumph in Paris as well as in America. During his time in Paris and New York, Riopelle rubbed elbows with the greatest jazz legends of the era, including Bud Powell. This interest in the music led him to permit the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal to reproduce silkscreens of his piece, Jazz, in 1997. Then, during the 25th anniversary of the Festival, the late painter’s estate granted exclusive permission to reproduce 75 copies of the previously unreleased 1990 work Big Bang, Big Band, which Alain Simard had personally acquired in 1997, during a visit to the artist’s home on L’Isle-aux-Grues.

Today, the works of Jean-Paul Riopelle are included in major museum, private and public collections and showcased in the most important galleries the world over. His is an immense and diversified oeuvre that opened new artistic horizons, leaving its mark on the history of world art.

Tribute to Riopelle with a performance featuring poetry and music, by Raôul Duguay

On Thursday, November 10, 6 p.m. at the Galerie, Raôul Duguay, one of our greatest poets, will deliver a long poem, a work of incredible sensitivity, in which he sought to capture the very essence of Jean-Paul Riopelle’s creativity and spirit. He was able to journey to the deepest reaches of his being, translating his energy into words in a manner few have been able to accomplish. It is a piece which will transcend time, a spellbound sonic soliloquy to the work of Jean-Paul Riopelle. Raôul Duguay will be accompanied by Yvan Belleau, saxophonist, and Alain Sauvageau, pianist, against a backdrop of musical excerpts from works by composers Nicolas-Alexandre Marcotte and Nicolas Bougaïeff.

The Galerie Lounge TD

Permanently installed on the second floor of the Maison du Festival Rio Tinto Alcan, the Galerie Lounge TD, a non-profit organization, showcases the original works of the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal collection, many of which the general public rarely has a chance to see. They include the creations of Jean-Paul Riopelle, Marcel Barbeau, Corno, Armand Vaillancourt, Francis X. Pavy, Zïlon, Lhasa De Sela, Miles Davis, Tony Bennett, Frédéric Back, Miyuki Tanobe, Diane Dufresne and Yves Archambault, the Festival’s poster designer for nearly 25 years. Limited-edition signed and numbered silkscreens are also on display, including works by Robert Lapalme and Alfred Pellan, which can be bought exclusively at the Galerie Lounge TD.

The Galerie Lounge TD also presents large-scale exhibitions featuring world-renowned artists. In summertime, the Galerie moves right out into the heart of the festivities. Furthermore, it offers precious support to the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, a non-profit organism, since any potential surplus generated by the Galerie is devoted to financing the free outdoor concerts presented by the event.

Your visit continues with the Bell Exhibition of the Legends of the Festival, the Médiathèque Jazz/La Presse and Wednesday film screenings in the Salle Stevie Wonder… and admission is always free!

Next to the Galerie, fans can discover the all-new Bell Exhibition of the Legends of the Festival, a little museum featuring instruments, stage clothing, trophies and personal items belonging to the greatest names in jazz who have coloured over 30 years of Festival history and contributed to its international renown: stage costumes from Miles Davis and Ella Fitzgerald, guitars from Jeff Beck and Ben Harper, and the legendary hat worn by Leonard Cohen… Just above that, on the 3rd floor, you’ll find the Médiathèque Jazz/La Presse and its unique collection, the largest of its kind in this domain, bursting with jazz treasures, including the invaluable archives of late, lamented journalist Len Dobbin: thousands and thousands of jazz magazines, photos, and CDs, video recordings of Festival concerts, over a thousand hours of video archives… Finally, on Wednesday evenings, join us for screenings of past Festival concerts in the Salle Stevie Wonder, which adjoins the Galerie. And it’s all accessible free of charge, all year long.

Opening hours:

Monday: closed

Tuesday: 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Wednesday to Saturday: 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Sunday: 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Hours extended until 9 p.m. during concert evenings in L’Astral

Jean-Paul Riopelle

D’aile en ailes l’élan vital

(On the Wings of the Life-force)

From October 13 to December 24, 2011

Galerie Lounge TD

Maison du Festival Rio Tinto Alcan

305 Ste. Catherine Street West, 2nd Floor - 514 288-8882 -

Free admission

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