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Abstract textures

Throughout his life, Jean Paul Riopelle would amuse himself in the interplay between abstraction and figuration. He never wanted to be put in a box or stuck with a label. Above all, we can say that Jean Paul was free.

In order to illustrate his complex relationship to abstraction, here’s a proposal to create a photomontage at the edge of abstraction using close-up photos of different textures from nature: leaves, grass, bark, moss, water, rocks, etc.

Jean Paul Riopelle, Portrait de forêt, oil on canvas, 195 x 130 cm (1951) © Estate of Jean Paul Riopelle / SOCAN (2022)

Jean Paul Riopelle, Portrait de forêt, oil on canvas, 195 x 130 cm (1951) © Estate of Jean Paul Riopelle / SOCAN (2022)

Activité 1 : Instructions for playing the game online

  1. Using the online drawing interface, select different photos of nature that you find interesting;
  2. Zoom in, rotate and overlay the photos;
  3. Try out different spatial relationships;
  4. Try to make the image as abstract as possible;
  5. When you’re satisfied with the composition, upload your image;
  6. Print the image;
  7. Display the works in the classroom;
  8. If you wish, share your creations through the RIO Gallery.

Activité 2 : Instructions for playing the game on paper

  1. Take close-up photos of textures in nature;
  2. Print different photos;
  3. Cut the photos up and assemble them on a new sheet of paper, combining and overlapping them without gluing them down;
  4. Have fun playing with the orientation of each photo;
  5. Try out different spatial relationships;
  6. When you’re satisfied with the composition, glue the photos to the sheet;
  7. Display the works in the classroom;
  8. If you wish, share your creations through the RIO Gallery.