Les plasticiens


A Montreal group of abstract artists formed in reaction to Automatism and Abstract Expressionism, their name is a reference to Neo-Plasticism (De Stijl). Founders were Louis Belzile, Jean-Paul J??r??me, Rodolphe de Repentigny (Jauran), and Fernand Toupin. They announced their formation with the publication of a manifesto (February 10, 1955) outlining their objectives and philosophy. Fundamentally, it was to create paintings with technical harmony between the plastic elements of tone, texture, form and line. This would be achieved by exerting more control in design and application than the Automatistes or the Abstract Expressionists. And, there would be no conscious regard for any possible meaning or reference to the real world. Their works were, ideally; geometric, with only the suggestion of two-dimensional space and ultimately no texture. The group existed until 1959; however, in 1956, it was partially absorbed into the larger Non-Figurative Artists' Association of Montreal, which included abstract artists of various persuasions. Other artists associated with Les Plasticiens, or influenced by them, are: Guido Molinari, Claude Tousignant, Fernand Leduc, Yves Gaucher, Jacques Hurtubise and Charles Gagnon. (All artists mentioned are in AskART and all terms mentioned are in the AskART Glossary). Sources: Francois - Marc Gagnon ???The Canadian Encyclopedia???; D. Burnett and M.Schiff ???Contemporary Canadian Art???; and J.R. Harper ???Painting in Canada??? (see all in AskART book references). Written and submitted by M.D. Silverbrooke, Art Historian and Collector, West Vancouver, British Columbia.