Riopelle Museum project at L'Isle-aux-Grues

Riopelle Museum project at L’Isle-aux-Grues

(Quebec) This is where he painted one of his greatest works, bathed in the light of the island and, from afar, the rugged mountain landscapes of Charlevoix. This is also where he died in 2002.

Posted on June 17

Gabriel Byland

Gabriel Byland
Journalism

Jean Paul Reubel had a great story with L’Isle-aux-Grues. And now his former companion presented an ambitious project for the “Riopelle Museum Workshop” on Friday, which aims specifically to tell this love story between the artist and the archipelago.

The nearly 3,000-square-foot museum was designed by architect Pierre Thibault. If the budget of $ 4.3 million is completed, then from the summer of 2024 the museum will present works from the personal collection of Huguette Vachon and artefacts that Robert Lepage will narrate thanks to augmented reality.

“We will rediscover that light, which was created in it, and present the paintings that were made in the same year that Greetings to Rosa Luxemburgno happy island and other paintings, ”explains Mr.I Fashion, who has been involved in the painter’s life for the last fifteen years.

“From the envisioned place, we can see Baie-Saint-Paul, from Cap-Tourmente to Petite-Rivière-Saint-François. It is wonderful. It is the place of her inspiration.”


Photo by Patrice Laroche The Sun

Huguet Fashion and Architect Pierre Thibault

Nowadays, visitors who land on the archipelago off Montmanny struggle to find traces of the painter. His former studio is located in L’Île-aux-Oies, inaccessible to the public. It was also captured by the painter Mark Segan.

It was in this small workshop that Riopelle drew Greetings to Rosa Luxemburg. MI Vachon still lives at MacPherson Mansion, where the painter lived from 1995 until his death seven years later.

In a postcard scene

For years, she had a small museum project on the island of 125 people in memory of her husband. When a Dilapidated Too Small House was up for sale last summer, I seized the opportunity. The house came with a plot of land perfect for a small museum.

The Riopelle-Vachon Foundation is leading the project. I entrusted Pierre Thibault with the task of designing what is meant to be a “museum-workshop”.

The architect saw in this a nice touch of fate. Years earlier he had visited Japan’s Naoshima Island, a treasure trove of museums and art galleries. He said to himself: “We have everything we have in Quebec.”

“But Isle-aux-Grues is better than Japan. The landscaping is very luxurious,” he said Friday during the press conference to unveil the project.

  • Riopelle Museum's futuristic workshop

    Illustrations provided by ATELIER PIERRE THIBAULT

    Riopelle Museum’s futuristic workshop

  • Museum of the Future showroom

    Illustrations provided by ATELIER PIERRE THIBAULT

    Museum of the Future showroom

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The architect designed an airy place, which gives pride to the lighting and landscape. He wanted to use “typical shapes, shingles, large porches to sit on.”

“There is a summary of the territory and who we are in its work,” says Pierre Thibault.

The place will serve as a museum during the high season, and then as a gathering place for residents in the winter. The mayor supports the project.

“It will bring a new kind of tourism to the island. It is a very beautiful project. The municipality is going up at 100 miles per hour,” says Pierre Garipe, mayor of Saint-Antoine de Lille au Gros.

In competition with MNBAQ?

The projects about Riopelle, one of the greatest Quebec and Canadian artists, are corps on the eve of the centenary of his birth, October 3, 1923.

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts had considered, and finally ruled out, building a pavilion dedicated to the painter. In the capital, the National Museum of Fine Arts of Quebec (MNBAQ) wants to begin building in 2023 the Espace Riopelle, a pavilion that will be entirely dedicated to it.

The painter’s ex-wife does not think his project can rival that of MNBAQ.

“No, it has nothing to do with it,” she said. The island museum will be ‘intimate’, focusing largely on the artist’s relationship with the archipelago.

“My business will be at the beginning. After that, we will expand the collection, but we are already able, through my business, to support a beautiful space for years,” she says.

The museum will be built if the budget can be closed, thanks to the help of sponsors, the public or the government. The wife of Quebec Premier Isabel Price also attended the presentation on Friday.

“This does not mean that because of Riobel, the money will come that way,” says ex-boyfriend of the painter Andre Michel, who is helping the foundation with this project. “We’ll have to work.”


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