An art exhibit being described as surrealist and expressive is opening at Two Rivers Gallery in Prince George this evening (Thursday).

Mark Thibeault’s multi-disciplinary practice includes painting, music, and lutherie (the building of stringed instruments).

His paintings are driven by the artist’s reflection on subjects such as temporality and impermanence.

The paintings featured in Succession are taken from three distinct series: Populated, Elements, and Cycles.

Works from the Populated series are influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic, and are orientated around contrasting themes of togetherness and isolation.

Each painting in the Elements series is an expression of multiple sights and experiences inspired by Northern BC landscapes and ecology.

Lastly, the works from Cycles express constant flux: the notion that nothing remains the same for very long.

For Thibeault, all of the paintings in this exhibition are connected, and all are informed by change.

“Everything is in a state of becoming,” Thibeault says “my work is about witnessing the changes around me.”

Thibeault’s approach to painting is deeply intuitive, drawing inspiration from the tradition of automatism.

Automatic painting, or automatism, is a surrealist technique where the artist suppresses conscious thought in order to create the work.

“I rarely pre-plan my paintings,” says Thibeault, adding “the direction of each work is governed by the marks I make.”

Furthermore, his paintings are never derived from a single source or image.

Rather, Thibeault collects a mental inventory of images to draw from.

Succession opens to the public tonight at 5:00pm, followed by a Facebook Live Q&A with the artist at 7:30.