From 1995-1997, François does his first explorations with colors, forms and mediums, creating abstractions which always contain some ghostly form of figuration.
From 1998 to 1999, François returns to figuration, but it's a figuration which is highly stylized, with modernist influences. Then again, it's about exploring possibilities with colors and materials, as well as emotions.
Having started his classes in Visual Arts at Université du Québec in Montréal, François realizes a series of drawings in a large format, sometimes with collage of photocopied images and cardboard. It's a series which explores autorepresentation, in its unconscious and emotional larger contents.
In April 2001, having a gallery space, Gamma Ray Productions on Somerset St. in Ottawa, to exhibit as well as realize collaborations with multiple artists from the region, François creates a series of collage works with charcoal, acrylic, sometimes spraypaint, markers, pastels and tar. It's the collage series which will him define him for a couple of years.
Figuration is still put forward in this period where François attends the University of Ottawa and creates large paintings, often more than 5 feet, simply hanging on the wall without a frame. He explores history of art, the contemporary ideals and pictural conventions, in a satyric manner, for Comtemporary Art, with its embrace of conceptual art, often dismisses painting and -according to the artist, falsely- claims that concept is the supreme form of art.
After a convalescence period, François comes back to painting, trying to continue the work that he had started in 2005, without the studio that could enable him to do so. With limited working space, François creates a series with animals (circus bears, cats, stuffed goats) and objects or broken vehicles, which become metaphors of the self which is unable to go forward, blocked in a situation which he does not embrace.
In the beginning of 2013, after a couple of years of writing intensively and having published two books, François comes back to painting, to the simplicity of drawing, with the help of collage, which was put aside for a certain time. Symbols and forms, colors emerge in this series where François chooses to let his spontaneity, his unconscious mind and simplest emotions speak for themselves, creating simple yet colourful works.
©François Baril Pelletier