Francine Simonin

Chroniques Concentriques

​​Yves Laroche invite you to discover these unseen artworks of Francine Simonin

Small stories inspired by the mood of a day, not concentric at all, but whose title evokes the obsession that had taken hold of the artist:


“I made 1500 in three months!”

Francine Simonin, Chroniques concentriques, 1996, Techniques mixtes sur papier Chine, 11,8 x 11,8 po. / 30 x 30 cm.
Francine Simonin, Chroniques concentriques, 1996, Techniques mixtes sur papier Chine, 11,8 x 11,8 po. / 30 x 30 cm.

The body and the movement, the movement as a sign and the body as a trace. From the beginning, the obsession of the woman’s body, rather of the women’s body, because this obsession, this particular glance, is carried on a body always individualized at the same time as representative and witness of a whole. This whole, this family is situated throughout the history of humanity, and the Venuses of Lespugue, the Black Goddesses and the Cabaret Trainers can be found and recognized in the features of this painted woman. First the body, and the movement, the movement of the bodies and that of the brush, of the fingers on the chalk, of the gestures of the model who moves in the studio, to finally capture only the essential, this speed and this distance. These gestures that never cease to free themselves, to free themselves, to strengthen themselves and to justify themselves.


Text by Nicolas Raboud



Francine Simonin, born on October 2, 1936 in Lausanne, Switzerland, represents a generation of expressionists (painters, draughtsmen and engravers) both in her native country and here in Montreal.

Her cherished medium as always been engraving, although in the 80s she starts painting in extensive formats, something engraving was not allowing her. For nearly half a century, Francine Simonin pursued a pictorial quest in constant renewal, addressing committed themes such as the female body and its representation in art.

From the 1970s, Francine Simonin moved to Montreal and became an icon of Quebec expressionism. During her career, she will meet Jean Paul Riopelle, René Derouin, Serge Lemoyne and Denis Pellerin, among other artists whom will become close friends.

Over the course of her prolific career, Simonin has showcased over two hundred solo exhibitions, for the most part in Switzerland, Canada, France, United States, and Spain. The Museum of Contemporary Art granted her a solo exhibition in 1975. 

Francine Simonin passed away in Montreal on October 9, 2020 at the age of 84.