“I feel that I have embarked upon a marvellous and magical adventure, which makes life really worth living; a state of happiness that one would want to continue forever.” — Sindon Gécin
Sindon Gécin was a Montreal artist known for his precise, stylised and fanciful pen and ink drawings of landscapes, figures and still lifes. His work was often inspired by religious themes.
Born Gérard Sindon, Gécin was a member of the Brothers of the Christian Schools until the age of 25, when he pursued studies in education and psychology at Montreal’s École Normale Jacques-Cartier and Institut pédagogique Saint-Georges.
It was at age 47, towards the end of a long career teaching elementary school with the Montreal Catholic school board, that Gécin began drawing and painting under the name Sindon Gécin. Largely self-taught, Gécin took only a few classes at Montreal’s École des beaux-arts, and learned printmaking with Richard Lacroix at the Atelier Libre. His early work was largely done in ink, but later he experimented with watercolours, etching and collage, creating works characterized by busy motifs, curved or swirling lines, text inscriptions and large areas of white space. Before giving up his art practice at the age of 75 due to failing eyesight, Gécin had produced over 1000 works.
In 1959, Gécin began exhibiting his work in private galleries in Montreal and Toronto, and held solo exhibitions at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (1965), the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (1966) and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (1969).
The National Gallery of Canada holds three drawings by Gécin, including The Snow (c. 1962), which was included in the 1967 centenary exhibition Three Hundred Years of Canadian Art. Works by Gécin are also held in the collections of the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and the Art Gallery of Ontario.