We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful Brigitte Boulay. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with Brigitte below.
Brigitte, thanks for joining us, excited to have you contributing your stories and insights. Can you talk to us about a project that’s meant a lot to you?
TD Place & the Glebe BIA in Ottawa, Canada did a call to artists for an art installation entitled “Season of Growth”. The cubes were to represent coming back to society and what that represented to us. –
This piece entitled “Together we bloom”, was created to represent community. As we faced COVID, I witnessed so much kindness, generosity and support in our community that it humbled me. 🌻
As much as I was inspired by the goodness, there are always parts that aren’t so good. The black sparkles were added to represent those dark times and the orange splatters were added for our Indigenous children & families. 🧡
Although the piece was made for public viewing, it was a piece that I consider very personal and how I think many of us felt.
Brigitte, love having you share your insights with us. Before we ask you more questions, maybe you can take a moment to introduce yourself to our readers who might have missed our earlier conversations?
Brigitte is a visual artist and published author/poet. Brigitte’s life was infused with art for as long as she can remember. Her professional training was taken at the University of Pennsylvania, Algonquin Collage, Ottawa School of Art and private lessons from Jack Neilson of Almonte, ON for 1 year. Brigitte often attends workshops and classes to continue learning and expanding her skills.
Her natural ability to bring her writings and visual art to life was nurtured, influenced and inspired by her family. Her Great-Grandfather was a master violinist and conductor for the New York Symphony Orchestra as well as a trailblazer in the recordings of traditional Quebecois jigs. Arthure Joseph Boulay’s (AJ) recordings can be found at the National Archives of Canada. Her Grandfather was a professional Saxophone artist and visual artist, and her Father was a part-time musician and artist. Her Mother was an incredible self taught artist who had a huge impact on her; she nurtured Brigitte’s natural artistic talents.
Her creations can be found in various art galleries, cafe’s, bistros and art shows. Brigitte accepts commission pieces and it is an absolute pleasure for her to create something personal.
She is a published poet, author and co-author. “We Live in the Shadows” is a compilation of personal stories of those who live on the streets. It was published in Ottawa, ON. Brigitte also co-authored “Ruby Red Shoes”, a book about female empowerment, “Thin Places: The Ottawan Anthology”, an anthology of the writings of various authors as well as “Love and Catastrophe – Poetre”.
Brigitte’s hand made stationery became a successful business for 13 years. Brigitte’s stationery displayed an innate musical appreciation of big bands and orchestras and the glamour from the Hollywood glory days. It was an honor to have been chosen to design stationery for Sophie Gregoire (wife of Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada), The Archbishop of Canada, President and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University, Vice President Canada at Rio Tinto, President of NSERC, President of Revlon to name a few.
Of all the accolades and nominations Brigitte has received for her work, her most prestigious and heart centered of all is the Eagle Feather that she received for her work in helping our homeless.
*The Great Golden Eagle feather was picked up by a feather carrier in the Huron (Iroquois) nation of Quebec, Canada.
Brigitte’s heart is very close to those living on the streets. She was the President & founding member of Shadow Ottawa. Shadow provided assistance to our homeless and those living in poverty in Ottawa, ON. Brigitte was overtaken by sadness after doing street outreach one day and she wrote a poem, “We live in the shadows”. The poem became a song: We live in the shadows – YouTube. All artists’ information can be found on YouTube for this song.
For you, what’s the most rewarding aspect of being a creative?
Commission pieces that you get bang on! :)
As an artist and empathic person, I tend to create from my heart. When I can create something that people stop and reflect on, it’s a success. Whatever feeling it evokes, i’ve done what I set out to do. My personal satisfaction comes from the ability to combine emotion, colour and depth while using the artistic rules to create a piece and have someone fall in love with it, is incredibly rewarding for me.
What do you think is the goal or mission that drives your creative journey?
The driving force behind my creative journey has always simply been the need to create. The need to express myself in a creative process is inherently in me and I need to feed that side of me.
The goal is always to bring beauty and the raw truths of what I see, hear or feel. My feelings at the time of creating is often reflected by the colours I choose, the genre of art, etc, Most importantly, is to simply be in that moment and allowing what comes through to let it come through naturally. Once i’ve captured the feeling in whatever genre i’m working with, then the goal is to introduce the artistic rules so that the viewer can truly feel what I was feeling while creating the piece. To capture precious moments in time revealed through visual art.
- Website: www.brigitteboulay.ca
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brigitteboulayart/
- Linkedin: https://ca.linkedin.com/in/brigitte-boulay-51258949