Evolution and expansion are the words to describe the next steps in Halin de Repentigny’s 40-plus-years journey as a northern artist. His upcoming gallery showcase, “Homestay” – Keep the Fire Burning, in September, will continue his depictions of northern lifestyles. It’s a collection of all new work that he painted last winter in Dawson City.
Wintering in the North was a departure from his normal routine, as de Repentigny has regularly wintered in Argentina over the past decade. This winter was a chance to help his new wife understand where his inspiration came from and provided the opportunity to spend time painting based on their activities. it’s the first time in a while people will see his paintings with snow on them, de Repentigny chuckled.
“My new wife wanted to experience the winter,” he explained. “I wanted to experience with my new wife the other side of me.
“We got out trapping and snowshoeing. We got up to Moosehide. It’s very northern. Northern lifestyles.”
He tries to hold a gallery in Whitehorse every two years, to display his new works for the numerous fans he’s acquired over the years. But he’s working to expand beyond his traditional supporters and has big plans for 2020 when he has secured gallery shows in Victoria, at the Madrona Gallery; and in Whistler, at the Adele Campbell Gallery.
“I’m starting to put my footprint in Vancouver,” de Repentigny said. “It’s a new audience … you have to establish yourself again and make a name for yourself.”
De Repentigny believes he isn’t a regular artist, but appreciates that those galleries believe in him and his work. And support his growth and evolution over the years. He’s a firm believer in changing your style and methods.
“Some artists stick to gigs that work,” he said. “I believe in painting whatever style you want. If it’s a good painting, it’s a good painting.
“You’ve got to evolve. That’s what those galleries down south saw. I’m evolving and I paint better than I did twenty years ago.”
Part of that is from his experience in Argentina and their use of colour. The palette they have is different and he’s used that experience to evolve his palette and use of colours.
The gallery runs from September 14 to 16. De Repentigny’s collection of paintings, created during his winter in Dawson, exceeds the available space, so they plan to make additional paintings available through private showings after the show. For more information on the show and private showings, contact his agent, Susan Stanley, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Halin de Repentigny Gallery
Old Fire Hall
Friday: 5 to 9 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Sunday: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.