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Who is Reymond Pagé, and why should you care?


Continued from the main page -

Of course, this is his ‘bad side of the bed’ commentary. His more rested self has been heard to say something a little more palatable to the fragile human mind.
“There is an extraordinary story to be uncovered in all things. Slowing down the moments in our lives and granting ourselves the time to observe is rewarded by the incredible variety of visual gifts that await us. By taking the blinders off of modern society's continuing need to sharpen our focus (all the while paradoxically limiting our attention span), we free ourselves to witness the extraordinary that runs parallel to us in this very moment.


If you missed the start of this rant from the main page, here it is: Reymond Pagé is a Canadian artist whose work runs the gamut from high-intensity realism to ragged, dense abstracts. The simple world becomes the extraordinary through his painting, drawing, and photography. His interests include trying to understand how the influence of hollow popular culture and power affect seemingly democratic societies, and how shamelessness and a misunderstanding of ego vs. intellect will result in a climate-fuelled armageddon. With increasing national extremism and over-the-top religious fervour, art's purpose as a tool for engagement is hardly required by those who seek to dominate the political and economic landscape. For those of us who do not choose that path, art can make a significant contribution to the enrichment of our existence as we seek to understand what makes us feel and respond. “My goal is to create work that is a fusion of what I glean from my reading on and observations of contemporary societal behaviour (for instance, trying to understand why people of means can close their eyes to death and suffering a few thousand miles away yet are enraged when gas prices rise before a long weekend) and my skill in making finely crafted drawings and paintings.” Cont'd at left.

      The cumulative power of that kind of observative stance, that curiosity, that need to know why, allows us to maintain that child-like sense of wonder, programmed into each of us at birth, that our prolonged existence in this world tries to wrestle from us.
We are as much products of our expectations as we are products of our environments.
Continuously searching for the wondrous truth of the world around us brings us further along the path of creating the kind of world that most of us, the world over, would like to see.
It is not essential for art to be wondrous, or beautiful, in order to have an impact, but it must be true. As such, artists are the conduits, uncovering the story, revealing some kind of truth to the viewer.
I am inspired by the fantastic nature of how this world continues to march forward, in spite of all the people in suits who'd like to ruin it for the rest of us.”
etc group drawings
      The lens through which he sees the world was fashioned early on in the days when he was an avid comic book collector. The idea of the superhero wielded enormous impact over a young boy who believed that being a superhero was a valid career choice.
In the early 2000's, his work with RAFI (now ETCGroup) helped in further developing some of the concepts of justice that had been awakened by those comic book heroes.
sports drawings
      As a long-time player of football, basketball, and hockey, he has seen the games change enormously since the days when the Montreal Canadiens were the most dominant team in the history of team sports. The trade of Joe Montana to the Kansas City Chiefs brought hope to these football-loving prairies, but they were dashed when Kimble Anders bobbled that pass on the one-yard line. The retirement of Michael Jordan likely had as big an impact on him as any Chicago native, resulting in a project that remains his largest drawing to date.        
trip photos
      On a two hundred and seventy-five day, round-the-world trip with his wife and young sons, a new side of Pagé emerged - that of a photographer, and, of all things, a writer. Initially hoping to capture images as a means of amassing reference material for future work, the process of taking so many pictures, often hundreds a day, helped to hone his eye to envision an environment as a drawing, painting, or photographic print. The writing began as a way to recount events for friends and family back home, but quickly became an obsession, as every minute of every day seemed full to the brim with new experiences worth 'writing home about.' By the time they returned home, the odometer on the blog clocked in at 150,000 words. Which interestingly enough, amounts to less than five words per mile travelled, so he was actually rather restrained in his descriptive efforts.        
more trip photos
      After a few years, thoughts started to swirl in his head about all that material, simply collecting digital dust on an increasingly fragmented hard drive. Several young backpackers who had crossed their path over those nine months, said, "It's cool to see that travelling doesn't have to end when you have children." He started to think that maybe there were those out there, people with young children now, who wondered about the possibility of travelling with children, whether it was worth the effort, worth the expense. Knowing the answers to both of those questions was a resounding, "Absolutely!" he immediately set to work designing the books. The result turned out to be three of the most beautiful family travel books created. Filled with photographs from around the world and reproductions of drawings and paintings inspired by their travels, the books are a remarkable testament to the beauty of the world around us, waiting to be discovered by each and every one of us.

even more trip photos
      "Two weeks in Syria was enough proof that Syria was filled with the most welcoming people on the planet. Every time we turned a corner, someone would say, "Welcome to Syria." After getting lost in Aleppo, a young man took us to his home. His mother welcomed us with water and oranges as he set to work on his phone trying to figure out what we were looking for. Oddly enough, he could not understand our Arabic. But after many phone calls and lots of sign language with his mom ("Yes, we are married. We have two sons. You have five? Wow"!), he got us where we wanted to go.
People would cross the street to welcome us, even a man from Iran who was delighted that we were enjoying Damascus so much.
Looking back on the tragedy that is Syria today, I cannot help but think about the people on the street, regular people who were exactly like us - a man and a woman who loved their children, and just wanted a safe place for them to grow up, a place for them to thrive.
And mostly, it seems that is what I think about today when I paint or draw. I think about how we are the same, the world over. We have the same hopes and the same fears, and it's a small group that works hard to capitalize on some of that fear in order to advance their own puny and selfish interests. I don't know how we change that, other than being better people ourselves, and hopefully help others see and understand the value of being better people themselves. Imagine a world where all of us are just a little bit better. And another, where we're all just a little bit better again. That's where my mind goes, to a world where we are all the best people we can be. If we can see that world, we can see that there is something miraculous about being better people, in that there is no limit on that kind of greatness. It is infinite, and I love looking into that kind of infinity.
That's what I want people to see when they look at my work: the infinite power of everyone's individual greatness, because it's a greatness that's already there. We just have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable enough to see it, and vulnerable to let ours out."


flying son                   another flying son picture

faces of India
artist photos


©2017 Reymond Pagé