Paul Béliveau

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Les rencontres LXXV, 2009
Acrylic on canvas
24 X 48 in.

Béliveau's approach to creating art has been best described as 'pictorial archeology,' as his work references a database of literally thousands of personal and historical photographs. With painstaking accuracy, Béliveau paints culturally significant artifacts such as his own book collection, placing volumes on Friedrich, Futurism, and Van Gogh beside the poetry of Friedrich von Schiller and Beethoven. Although Béliveau says he values ambiguity (“I do not like to name or designate things”), his painting style illustrates a deep reverence for preservation, precision and clarity. This paradox of elements -- both technical and philosophical -- is what makes his work so intrinsically brilliant. Béliveau says, “I like to use painted books as a strategy against loss, even though worn books evoke the passage of time and reveal one's own finiteness.”