MARCELLE FERRON, R.C.A.
SANS TITRE, 1961
oil on canvas
28.5 ins x 21 ins; 71.3 cms x 52.5 cms
Produced during Ferron’s Parisian period, “Sans Titre” underscores the artist’s affinity for a powerful palette and broad, gestural strokes. Having resided in France since 1953, Ferron’s international reputation had grown significantly with participation in numerous international solo and group exhibitions. In 1961, Ferron was awarded the silver medal at the Bienal de São Paulo, a major exhibition which also presented the talents of Canadian artists Ron Bloore, Alex Colville, Gord Smith and Harold Town. It was during this momentous year that “Sans Titre” was born; the painting would then travel across the Atlantic and be exhibited in April of 1962 at Gallery Moos in Toronto.
In “Sans Titre”, Ferron employs wide palette knife strokes with brilliant hues that contrast a magnificent white pigment. The controlled and exquisite movement of the palette knife brings to life a composition that has some impressions of Paul-Emile Borduas’ work with a colour scheme and dynamic tension that are Ferron’s own. Although incredibly vivid, the pigments have a great transparency to them caused by the act of sweeping the spatula across the surface. “Sans Titre” is a unique display of “matter and transparence”, where experimental colours and forms incite thoughts of gemstones or a masterfully disintegrated landscape. It is not surprising that, by 1963, Ferron would commence studying experimental stained-glass making in Michel Blum’s Parisian studio.
Gunda Lambton, “Stealing the Show: Seven Women Artists in Canadian Public Art”, Montreal/Kingston, 1994, page 23.
Gallery Moos, Toronto.
Private Collection, Toronto.
Marcelle Ferron, Gallery Moos, Toronto, April 5-24, 1962.