I am a Montreal visual artist engaged in contemporary art trends in Canada with a full-time painting practice Paul Wysmyk self-portraitbased out of my studio in the city. My current artist project embraces some interesting new themes that weave together figurative elements of pop sensibilities with a geometric abstract substructure. Mostly I work in oil paint on wood panel or canvas as well as acrylic and collage on paper. My work can be viewed at the David Kaye Gallery in Toronto;  check for info at www.davidkayegallery.com .  Over the last few years I have had solo exhibitions of paintings both in Toronto and Montreal. During the last decade I have also completed a number of murals  throughout Eastern Canada, from Newfoundland through Nova Scotia, P.E.I., New Brunswick and Quebec.

Artist Statement

Drawing and painting is at the heart of my creative practice.

I take imagery from many sources; reproductions from books and magazines of elements from popular culture: ie: motels, cars, lamps, coffee pots. I also use my sketchbooks as a source of scenes from everyday life and imaginary places. My own photos of local places and things are another source as are are found objects, like lost toys, fabric samples, cutout letters, etc.

These elements of pop culture are not specific brands and logos but generic models. A car yes, a Ford no. They become archetypes for modern living that anyone might have experienced. This collection of pop  imagery serves as an access point to modern life and more importantly for me, to my modern life and personal history.

So, in my work I try to align my personal everyday experience like a transparent overlay on the history of art,   I am trying to understand the past in my own terms, shifting my story toward the universal themes of art history and at the same time bringing art history down to a common experience that I can understand. If I do this well enough it will also do the same for the viewer.

When you lay a transparency of a personal image over say a famous historical work the result is a shiftiness of image, things don’t quite line up but become more  interesting in their confusion, more animated and abstracted. The abstracting of imagery, isolating it from its original milieu by means of colour, composition and graphic elements allows the distilling of my source material into a personal narrative. My painting isn’t about literal representation but about my way of thinking realised in visual terms.