Dominic Besner

For several years, Besner has been wholly dedicated to painting, searching for the aesthetics to shape his world vision. His colorful and moving paintings are inspired by his studies in architecture, his artistic mentors and by the people he encountered in the side streets and alleys of Montreal. One easily imagines how his clairvoyant and playful observations of the world give way to his paintings. Besner is profoundly concerned by the body’s degradation, by the aspects of the body that call upon reflection and observation. He creates characters that keep a trace of the past, sometimes seeming like a shadow of them selves, facing their destiny without fear. This fabulous jungle was inspired by characters from Otto Dix and Nicolas de Crécy, a comic book artist. It is an environment that is future looking, somewhat like human beings; torn but crippled with hope…


Besner was born in North Lancaster, Ontario, in 1965 and completed a bachelor's degree in architecture at the University of Montreal in 1992. His training as an architect, which he undertook at Algonquin College in Ottawa a few years before his bachelor’s, gave him the opportunity to reflect upon the city and its components: the primarily human dimension, the tradition which any city plan must follow and the elements that are necessary to survive in a cultural environment. His university years provided him with a critical mind allowing him to define a living environment centered on human beings, taking into account the past, present and future. His studies most of all lead him to painting, his true passion, and to a career, which transformed his formal training into a pictorial esthetic of figures and space, reflected through the half realist, half fictional gaze of the artist.


To create his paintings, Besner uses a mixed technique on canvas; he uses mostly oil and its rich color pallet, as well as acrylic paint, structural mortar, china marker and aerosol paint. Along with this material, he uses a finger application technique and scrapes the surface of the canvas.