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A New Arcadia, The Art of Gregg Simpson

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Published on Dec 14, 2012

Born in Ottawa in 1947, Bowen Island artist and musician, Gregg Simpson, has been active in visual art, music and multi-media since the mid-1960s. He was instrumental in the early developments in Vancouver's 1960s "golden age" of multi-media, such as the Sound Gallery and Intermedia. As a professional drummer and percussionist, he has performed since for over forty years with some of the major names in jazz.

His visual art has been exhibited in museums and galleries in Canada, the U.S., France, England, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Malaysia, and South America and is included in over 100 private and museum collections internationally.

Simpson's work has been written about and studied in several art journals, history books and academic studies at several major institutions including: the Sorbonne in Paris, the Université Rabelais de Tours, France and the Accademia Tiberina in Rome. In Paris, his work has been exhibited and published by two renowned art historians who were both colleagues of the Surrealist Group's founder, André Breton. The first, José Pierre, included the artist in his landmark book, l'Univers Surréaliste, (Editions Somogy,1983) and in 1999, Sarane Alexandrian put Simpson's work in his periodical, Supériore Inconnu.

Simpson's work has evolved from the collages and Pop-influenced paintings of the 1960s, through the neo-Surrealism of the 1970s to an organic abstraction in the last thirty years. The west coast rainforest where he grew up and lives today is always an underlying factor in Simpson's work, alternating with formalist tendencies derived from European art, especially surrealism and abstraction.

The film was a BRAVO TV Documentary in 2003 produced by Fountain Productions, Burnaby, BC. It has been screened at FIFA 2004, McCord Museum, Montreal; the
Biennale Internazionale di Ferrara, 2004, Castello Estense, Ferrara, Italy; and
PLAY III 2004, Museo de Arte Ángel M. De Rosa, Junìn, Buenos Aires, Argentina

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