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Jun 1 - Sep 8
As part of the centennial celebrations of Jean Paul Riopelle’s birth, this retrospective exhibition examines the 20th-century artistic trailblazer through a 21st-century lens.

Organized by the National Gallery of Canada and presented at WAG-Qaumajuq by Power Corporation of Canada, Riopelle: Crossroads in Time / À la croisée des temps draws on the artist’s oeuvre across various mediums and challenges some of the pervasive assumptions about his life and work. Offering a unique take on this famed Canadian artist, the exhibition curated by Sylvie Lacerte presents Riopelle’s acclaimed works alongside creations rarely or never seen before, including sculptures, prints, collages, and figurative drawings.

You will discover the full force of Riopelle’s influence through the inclusion of selected works by artists – both his contemporaries and some working today – who represent a broad range of cultural and aesthetic perspectives.

Riopelle: Crossroads in Time is presented as part of the Jean Paul Riopelle Centennial celebrations, an initiative of the Jean Paul Riopelle Foundation.


Photo : JOHN CRAVEN Riopelle, atelier Durantin, 1952

Jean Paul Riopelle

Jean Paul Riopelle (1923–2002) is one of Canada’s most significant artists of the 20th century. Attracted to painting from a young age, in 1943 he enrolled in the art program at Montreal’s École du meuble, where he met the painter Paul-Émile Borduas (1905–1960). The encounter was life changing for Riopelle, who went on to join the Automatistes, an influential group of Québécois artists, and to be a signatory of their landmark 1948 manifesto, Refus global.  He later settled in Paris, where he became the most famous Canadian painter in Europe and the rest of the world. Stylistically linked to many of the most important art movements of his time, Riopelle’s legacy is his large and diverse body of work, expressing both abstraction and figuration in imaginative and surprising ways.

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WAG-Qaumajuq recognizes that land acknowledgements are part of an ongoing dialogue with Indigenous Nations, and we are grateful to live and work on these lands and waters. Institutionally, WAG-Qaumajuq is committed to acknowledging our colonial history and we are actively working to interrogate the Gallery’s colonial ways of being.

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