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About the artist

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Denis Charette

A Sculptor with Instinct

Intuitive and thoughtful, my creative approach is influenced by the person and the artist that I am. Born in the beautiful Outaouais region, I've chosen to establish my studio and to practice my art in Cantley, Quebec, though my clients can be found across Canada and beyond.

I remember how, as a child, I was already fascinated with arts and culture. Without ever being taught by anyone, I created and made art and objects with ease. It was therefore very natural for me to choose sculpting as my main occupation over 30 years ago.

Of Heart and Soul

As a self-thought artist, it’s as if my hands had always known what to do. As soon as I lay them on the wood, they connect with my heart and my soul in a beautiful symphony guided by my dreams. I abandon myself to the sculpture that is about to emerge and it’s only afterwards that the work reveals its full meaning.

Eager advocate of Animism according to which even lifeless objects have a soul, I literally see my work come to life under my fingers. Here is its heart, while there lies its spirit. Symbolism is very important to me and it’s in a very spontaneous way that my creations unfold.

Honoring the Land

I mainly work from solid wood but also use stone and antlers when I feel it’s right. Being a professional artist who salutes and honors indigenous art and mythology these story's have always made a strong impression on me. Through intuition, experiences, readings and conversations with elders, I have come to discover all the beauty of these cultures[GG2] , inspiring me to create art that is both very personal and universal.

Culture and identity play a central role in my work, which tells the story of elders and of Mother Earth and brings together characters inspired by nature, imagination and the unconscious mind.

A Fulfilling Journey

My work is recognized for the twenty-some totem poles built to honour the land and those who have preceded us that are exhibited at Montebello’s Omega Park and in other public places of significance. My artworks can also be found in several private collections, whether they consist of monumental creations anchored in their environment, smaller sculptures or small colored engravings.

My first public art contract dates back to 1991 when I participated in sculpting Canada’s multicultural Totem pole found in the ByWard Market in Ottawa. Two-time recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts, I’ve had the chance to enrich my knowledge on totem poles with internationally-renowned Haïda artist Reg Davidson.

 

Today, it’s with pride and enthusiasm that I focus on sculpting pieces that speak to everyone and testify of the small and big stories that have marked our land and continue to do so, in the hope of raising awareness and enriching intercultural dialogue.

 

Sincerely,

Denis Charette

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