Marcellin Simard

Born in Chicoutimi, Quebec, Canada.
I’m the youngest of 20 children, all born from the same mother and father. 
As a child I was very different from everyone around me.  I was very energetic and inquisitive, and a “handful” for my parents. I always had a lot of projects going on; constructing things, making sculptures in wax and ceramics. Once I created a life-like Frankenstein! I liked to paint and draw, using pastel and watercolor. I thrived on challenges.  I was also very imaginative and drawn to subjects like the supernatural, occult and psychics. I also enjoyed reading fairy tales and watched them on TV.  One of my older sisters would frequently read me a fairy tale at bedtime.
 I’ve been working for 30 years as an Interventional Cardiologist, so there has been little or no time for me to undertake a formal art education. I have studied art on my own and learned to paint and draw through much practice. Although I have taken a few painting and drawing classes over the years, I find my best painting has come from simply spending many hours in my studio.  I also find inspiration from reading about the lives of renown artists and how they overcame their struggles and challenges. Some of the more rewarding art “education” I have received has been sitting with peers and friends to discuss art and techniques. Many of the artists discourage me from trying too hard to be technically perfect so that I don’t lose my spontaneity and naivety. 
I had a cardiology practice in Guam and brought patients to Los Angeles for their care.  While in Guam I was hit by a car which resulted in a broken leg and being unconscious for 12 hours. After that incident I notice that my way of painting became different, more furious and intense. Hours would pass while painting without any awareness of the time or my environment. It was like being in a trance. I believe the accident and subsequent unconsciousness resulted in my true self emerging in my work.  In some ways I feel I have tapped into something stronger than myself.  At times I believe I create works from an unconscious, dream-like state which otherwise would have been unachievable for me.
I studied psychiatry before pursuing medicine. I was especially interested in dreams. I even wrote a book on the subject with my then 14-year-old daughter — Tell Me Your Dreams (a dream journal).  Most of my paintings have been inspired by my dreams; night, day and lucid dreams.  Another major influence is my life partner, Will, who had an art gallery for 10 years. While he ran this galleryI was exposed to several wonderful artists, dealers, curators, art consultant and collectors. We enjoyed traveling to galleries and museum all over the World. I was entranced with the art we saw with all of its diversity, mystery, intelligence, and beauty. Our three kids, Malina (16), Luc (14) and Harley (10) have also taught me a lot. I love the purity of their soul and their excitement about the smallest things in life. They have all posed for me and are featured in a number of my works.
In 2006, I moved with my partner and children to Santa Fe, New Mexico. Within a few years in Santa Fe, my artistic career achieved quick success including solo exhibitions at Linda Durham Contemporary Art, the Center for Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe and the 6th Street Lofts in Albuquerque. I had group exhibitions at the Santa Fe Art Institute and The Brooklyn Art Library. My work is included in prestigious collections including that of Albuquerque Former Mayor Martin Chavez, Former Spain Ambassador Ed Romero, State Representative Adele Hundley, and Former Chief Justice Patricio Serna, to name but a few.

Artist Statement

I don’t set out to produce art about one subject or another. My influences are first and foremost everything I see, feel and experience, what is around me, like my family for example. Since 1996, my work has been inspired by dreams, the subconscious mind.  Lately my subject matter is about people and an exploration of life in a more universal sense. Art has the power to make one see things in a new light. It allows us to develop a love for things and places that we would otherwise not have noticed. In every single one of my paintings, there is something stronger than myself, stronger than life, something powerful that can help you achieve what you thought was unachievable. It is like getting strength from your soul. For me painting offers a way to self heal, and to connect to my true self. It is not a choice but a need, like eating and breathing.

Solo Exhibitions

“Dreams of Marcellin”, Luna Circle Gallery, Albuquerque, NM, 2011
“Persistence of Vision”, Spector Ripps Project Space, CCA , Santa Fe, NM, 2010
6th Street Lofts, Albuquerque, NM, 2009.
Linda Durham Gallery, Santa Fe, NM, 2009.
“Dream Series: Heroes and Gods”, Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NM, 2009.

Group Shows

“THE ART OF STORYTELLING: Lies, Enchantment, Humor & Truth”, The American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore, MD, 2012 – 2013
“The Raven”, Loma Colorado Main Library, Albuquerque, NM, 2012
“1000 Words: Contemporary Art as Narrative”, Business of Art Center, Manitou Springs, CO, 2011
“The Self Portrait Project”, Brooklyn Art Library, New York, NY, 2010
“The Green Vision” The Santa Fe Art Institute, Santa Fe, 2009