Colin Gibson biography
Born in Montreal in 1951, Colin Gibson began carving wooden figures at the age of five. When he was 11, he was sent to study under sculptor Jean Borgeaux. This was instrumental in confirming his life’s ambition to become a sculptor. After studying at L’Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal, in 1970, Gibson worked as a commercial artist while continuing to develop his talent. In 1975, he was commissioned to carve a wood relief for Le Meridien Hotel, Montreal.
In late 1976, Gibson moved to Toronto where he free-lanced with Uplis Ltd., a special effects company. There he worked on three-dimensional, multi-media models and robotics for commercials. He attended weekly drawing classes, began carving stylized figurative forms and later modeled was studies that he had cast into bronze. He received private and corporate commissions and began exhibiting his work, in galleries, in 1978.
In 1983, he was commissioned to create cast aluminum doors for Denison Mines Ltd., B.C. Then, in 1985, he was asked to design and carve acrylic-relief doors for Denison Potacan Potash, N.B.
During this period Gibson began working with art consultants and corporations to create cast bronze and stainless steel sculptures for their annual corporate awards.
He continued to experiment with different materials and began a series of abstracted figures fabricated from copper sheets to which a patina was applied. In 1986, he began carving a 5’x8’ acrylic mural – “Illumination” – in which ten figures depict the epic struggle between opposing forces. When the mural was complete in 1989, a stainless steel frame was designed and fabricated by Gibson at Soheil Mosun Ltd.
From 1987 to 1991, he exhibited his sculptures at the Louise Smith Gallery, Toronto, where he participated in a two-man show, in November 1990.
In 1991, he was commissioned to create a bronze for Constitution Square, Ottawa. He worked with developer, Chuck Magwood and art consultant, Greta Valen, as well as, Eric Knoespel of Artcast Inc., where two 7ft. figures were cast for installation in ’92.
In the 1990’s Gibson continued to experiment with form in different media. One direction was to explore the linear by constructing vibrant, metallic brass rod sculptures in which the transparent paint allowed the brass to shimmer through, enhancing the contours. He hammered brass sheets into angular, concave and convex shapes, which he welded together into sculptures that convey a sense of serenity and grace. Concurrently, he created a series of abstract shapes in brass, wood, and acrylic to express the interplay of colour and form.
He constructed a series of large wall installations from a mix of found objects that were reassembled, painted, and transformed. Finished works symbolized spiritual and cosmic themes which appear to emit subtle energies. The resulting collection exhibited at the Durham Gallery, in 2000, as a one-man show.
In the fall of 2000, Gibson was one of the artists invited to submit designs for a proposed veteran’s memorial in Courseulles-sur-Mer, France. His bronze sculpture, “Remembrance and Renewal”, was unveiled, at the Juno Beach Centre, on June 6th, 2003. The memorial kindles remembrance of the fallen and renewal of hope for world peace.
February of 2005, Gibson was a semi-finalist in the Queen’s Park Veterans Memorial Competition that involved teaming up and working with SCI landscape architects Fidenzio Salvatori, Margaret MacKenzie.
Gibson is currently working on two series to be cast in bronze. One is figurative, the other abstract. His work in on display at the Gallery Gevik in Toronto.
Colin with his wife and creative assistant, Jeanette, have their home and studio in a century-old church in the hamlet of Priceville, Ontario.
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