Living a life entirely devoted to his art for over 30 years, Yvan Genest spends his time between his Montreal hometown and Puerto Vallarta studios, while remaining very active in the Paris, Los Angeles and Seattle art scenes. His works have attracted an international circle of collectors seduced by the contemporary and timeless strength of his iconography.
Yvan Genest’s career had unconventional beginnings. At first, his artistic temperament drove him to music. As a songwriter, musician and singer, he toured throughout Europe as a performer for many years. Until he discovered painting, where he found an unforeseen ground for his fertile imagination.
From Paris to Mexico
For many years, he worked and had successful exhibitions in Paris, while honing his art with renowned artists. A first trip to Mexico in 1985 led him to discover the profound spirituality of Mexican art. His first exhibition in Puerto Vallarta, in 1998, brought him immediate recognition..
Yvan Genest’s maverick personality drove him to explore all paths of visual arts and develop his unique, shamanic and timeless imagery. A self-taught artist, he paints as a dancer dances, with both his body and spirit. His influences are diverse, from Mexican popular culture, Expressionism and modern free-form figurative painting, to specific artists such as Joseph Beuys, Rufino Tamayo and Francis Bacon. Yvan Genest has created up to this day more than 7000 works.
Yvan’s paintings are journeys into the underworld of the human soul. They represent the human psyche – the collective unconscious – into which the painter dives in order to bring back icons and symbols that are at the threshold of dreams. His art belongs to contemporary mystical expressionism, combining the insights and paradoxes of modernity with echoes of bygone ages of humankind.
"A painting is a door, a passage I discovered towards the unconscious, above and beyond the world of mere appearances. Beyond this door, the painter acts as a fashion designer for the soul."
Yvan presently works on large size canvases and murals. The larger the canvas, the larger the door that leads to the universal unconscious. He is working as well on hand made papers, inventing new combination with digital technology and traditional mediums. He is also working on the edition of an anthology book, that will cover three decades of his creations.
Watercolor, acrylic, pastel, tempera, oil, etching, serigraphy, linocut, woodcut, and digital art.
Magic Special Effects Workshops, conceived to help students discover and explore their own imagery; Digital Imagery Workshops; Lectures on Art (and art history); Live Art Performances.
More than a hundred solo and public shows in Europe, the United States, Canada and Mexico. Genest’s artwork is displayed in hundreds of private and corporate collections around the world.