Gerald Trottier was an Ottawa-based painter, sculptor, draughtsman, lithographer, printmaker, muralist and poet who created works imbued with spirituality and humanity. In his series of self-portraits, he explored his physical evolution and psyche over a fifty-six-year period (1946–2002).
Trottier’s various styles have their roots in the Flemish, Surrealist and Expressionist schools, among others. He studied under Bernard Klonis at the Art Students League of New York and, through a hockey scholarship, was able to travel to England and France in 1953 to study medieval culture. He participated in his first exhibition in 1944, and by 1950 was showing his work at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. He went on to participate in international biennials in Salzburg, Mexico City and São Paulo.
A passionate advocate for the integration of art and architecture, Trottier taught drawing for several years at Carleton University’s School of Architecture, where his large mosaic mural, The Pilgrimage of Man, is installed.