I am one of the ten artists asked to do a portrait of a Canadian Athlete for MOCA Calgary. This project is a fundraiser for the Museum of Contemporary Art Calgary and I hope that it is successful and contributes to a healthy future for this important institution in our city. The exhibition is called Olympian Heights and the athlete assigned to me was Alexandre Bilodeau.
The work is oil on canvas and it is 36×48″. The paintings will be on display at MOCA until July 1st 2013: http://shopmocacalgary.org/. My dad-John Hall- also has a portrait of Hayley Wickenheiser there! He is a genius creative and painter: http://mimesisfinearts.com/HTML/paintings-n.htm
Portrait of Alexandre Bilodeau-
In my approach to portraiture I like to include subject matter beyond the subject’s body or face. I find simple storytelling elements in the image very satisfying for myself as a painter but also to the owner and others who will eventually view it or live with it. Seems to add richness and fulfills the part of our minds that builds stories.
So when I received the photos of Alexandre Bilodeau I was happy to see not only studio portraits of him but also a couple of him skiing. Right away I set about combining the two. I choose this image of him laughing that spoke of joy, satisfaction and dare devilling paired with a freestyle move for maximum energy and celebration of his accomplishment. Another very important element for me was environment for the subject and with paint I designed layers of snow, sky, mountains and winter air acknowledging that nature and that winter season is the theatre in which the winter games are played.