My goal as an artist is to invite people into my inner world which I express in images and words. The result of this alchemy often brings me to the intersection where art and science meet. The natural world has always been a part of my life. I am in constant gestation as I absorb the natural beauty of the world around me and feel compelled to share my findings, always with the goal of birthing wonder in those who view my work.

My approach is multi-disciplinary in the sense that I interchangeably use images and words to connect with my viewers and readers. Art, to me, is a personal interpretation of the world. I am astounded by the beauty offered to us by nature, be it a landscape on the grand scale, or the bristles of a caterpillar on the microscopic scale. Shapes, textures and colours are what draw me to photograph an object or a scene. I can find myself lost is the wondrous whorl of a seashell, or the symmetry of an architectural masterpiece.

I began showing my work decades ago, at first taking part in a few group exhibitions at La Maison des artistes visuels in Winnipeg, followed by a duo exhibition with sculptor Émile Chartier at the same venue. His stone sculptures combined with my richly textured photographs created a wonderful organic synergy.

My first solo photographic exhibition — “Arborescence”, a pictorial of “the tree as an expression of the human condition” — was shown at Wayne Arthur Gallery in Winnipeg during Culture Days in October 2013. This was followed in October 2017 by my most recent solo exhibition, Involuntary Painting.

I discovered “involuntary painting”, or “la peinture involontaire”, as described by French artist Pierre Soulages, a few years ago via the Involuntary Painting Facebook photography group started by New York artist Millree Hughes and British poet, artist and musician Paul Terence Conneally. The photographs posted there are a response to their question: “With all the changes in Contemporary Art over the last 100 years what (out there, in the world) could be mistaken for a painting?” These misattributed ‘paintings’ can be “surfaces, objects, things that are not intended to be art, that through some process – time, decay, graffiti or some kind of abuse – have become ‘involuntary paintings’”. My exhibition went from ribbons of rolling landscape to a water-damaged poster depicting Everyman. Involuntary painting photography is largely affected by nature … the oxidation of rust, for example, or the weathering of wood. It is an abstract space where I find my creativity challenged and stretched, as there is hidden beauty everywhere.

In February 2020, I was accepted into the Buihno Artist Residency program. I spent three weeks in the village of Messejana in southern Portugal where I endeavoured to capture the area and its culture through involuntary painting photography. I am convinced that there are profound connections between humanity and nature, and this is the platform upon which my work is built.

Website: Sol Images
Facebook: Simone Hebert Allard
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