I had the pleasure of meeting the talented artist, illustrator and painter Sandra Chevrier, who currently lives in Montreal, Quebec, in her studio.
I knew I was at the right place when I spotted a sticker featuring one of her recognizable woman portrait on the streets.
I remember having seen her work for the first time during Nuart Festival in Norway, with her debut European solo show. The successful exhibition showcased an extensive series of works on canvas from Sandra’s internationally acclaimed “Cages” series.
She is a gaze collector, an idea chaser and a full time single mom. Her work takes her traveling over a broad range of fluctuating emotional enigmas and concepts that have set the standard of our modern communication. Working in a home studio, Sandra produces her work at a full-time scale, aggressively pursuing a common thread until it is worn away, leaving her to begin on a new path.
She exposes the limitations within our world, our self-imposed expectations and the cages we have allowed to bar us from fullness of life’s experience.
Her work is shown in Canada as well as in the United States, United Kingdom and Europe and Asia. The series ‘’Super heros Cages’’ mentioned earlier obtains a worldwide success. Her Art is now in the hands of collectors all over the globe; Europe, USA, Netherlands, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Russia…
‘I am mostly doing works that involve paintings or drawings. The methods of Comic books /collage/watercolour are new to me. I started working with mix media just to have fun’ She says.
The series “cages” is about women trying to find freedom from society’s twisted preconceptions of what a woman should or shouldn’t be. These women encased in these cages of brash imposing paint or comic books that masks their very person symbolizes the struggle that women go through with having these false expectations of beauty and perfection as well as the limitations society places on women, corrupting what truly is beautiful by placing women in these prisons of identity. By doing so, society is asking them to become superheroes.
Sandra explains how the ‘Cages’ series came to life, which was about one year ago. She used to work in a really controlled and hyper realistic way. One day, she was doing crafts with her kid, and just started painting with loose and heavy textures of paint on some of her old drawings of women portraits. She found that there was something really interesting there. And for the past year, She has been working on this idea, trying new things, and playing with it. The comic book collage was another idea that was born by accident. She was working on a DIY project by covering one of her Ikea dressers with comic book pages but it broke during the process. She had no idea what to do with all the comics she bought, but by recycling them on to her art, the idea of creating these different cages came to life.
Sandra uses collage or loose and heavy textures of paint that make the woman seem to be emerging from the surreal world within the canvas. A dance between reality and imagination, truth and deception.
We also discussed her upcoming projects including a group show exhibition ‘Trifecta’ (covered here) curated by Yasha Young from Urban Nation and held at Jonathan LeVine Gallery in New York. Trifecta brought together three international female artists that are at the forefront of a contemporary art movement re-imagining representation of women. Through an array of media Sandra Chevrier, Mimi Sholz and Handiedan use the female figure as their subject and are strong voices for a new generation of artists.
Sandra will be very busy until the end of the year with a solo show in LA at Thinkspace Gallery in October and an exhibition at Scope in December with Galerie COA.