Michèle Provost

#CouncilSpotlight — Michèle Provost

Jennifer Clark

Michèle Provost : Cultivating Autonomy

The Ottawa Arts Council supports artists and arts organizations through leadership, guidance and the provision of opportunities to advance our local creative potential.

Our series #CouncilSpotlight presents stories and experiences of Arts Council members and art award recipients.

Michèle received the Corel Endowment Fund for the Arts Award in 2003 and the Ottawa Arts Council Mid-Career Artist Award in 2010.

Michèle Provost

Where are you from? Are you from the Ottawa area?

Born in Montreal, I have been a resident of the Ottawa area for nearly 40 years.

How did you get involved in the Ottawa arts community?

I have been active in this community since graduating from the Ottawa School of Art in June 2000.

How would you describe your artistic practice/discipline?

I approach my work as a series of self-imposed problems, which I endeavour to resolve in stimulating visual terms.

What impact has your involvement with the arts/the Ottawa arts community had on your life?

Having initially no intention of pursuing a career in visual arts, I found that the human scale of the local community, and the support that it gave me, greatly facilitated the transition.

Is there a specific moment/situation in your art career that you remember fondly?

There are countless, the sum of which helped me to persevere in my moments of serious doubting.

Do you have any advice for artists in the Ottawa community or artists in general?

I am not at all prone to giving advice; what is good for one is useless for the other. I can only say that, personally, it has served me well to pursue what comes naturally. While it is crucial to keep abreast of everything art-related, one must be careful to cultivate the autonomy of one's own contribution.

What are you currently working on?

I have been creating an elaborate body of work which furthers my on-going exploration of our relationship with culture, this time pondering the "Art Star" phenomenon, and the ways in which it determines an artist's path. La Riopelle Home Collection is coming to the Ottawa Art Gallery in the fall ...

What was it like to receive an award from the Ottawa Arts Council? How did it impact your career?

Since artists most often work in isolation, only revealing the fruit of their labour once completed, it is sometimes reassuring to know that a group of people in the know entrust you to carry out out a project, sight unseen. I choose to take that as extra incentive to pursue ...

Want to learn more about Michèle and her work? Visit www.micheleprovost.ca.


The Ottawa Arts Council Mid-Career Artist Award is accepting applications until March 15th, 2018.

The Ottawa Arts Council's Corel Endowment Fund for the Arts Award is accepting applications until April 6th, 2018.

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