Born in Quesnel, British Columbia, Crissy Arseneau is a Canadian artist who lives and works in Vancouver. She has been featured by The Jealous Curator, the Georgia Straight and Kolaj Magazine. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and alternative art spaces in British Columbia, including the Vancouver Airport, with pieces held in private collections in Canada, the US, and the UK.
Working primarily in hand-painted and hand-cut paper, Crissy Arseneau's paper sculpture and pieced paintings explore attention and contemplation, time and place, and our relationship to the natural environment.
Her practice is informed by a nostalgia for the rural environment surrounding her childhood home in British Columbia’s interior and yearning for moments of reprieve from Vancouver's urban environment, the place she resides as an adult. Cloud watching in the reflections in the glass towers that dominate the skyline and frequent visits to the green spaces throughout and surrounding the city offer pockets of peace, wonder, and joy that inspire her work.
Each piece begins from a viewpoint of ecocentrism. In the forefront is the natural environment, with bands of radiant colour and stylized cloud formations frequent elements. Interactions with the built environment are subtly present through geometric forms, both cut and embossed. The artist's own bent toward problem-solving, applying order, and striving for exactness are also ever present in the work.
The inherent qualities of the art materials lead the process of making each piece. Paper painted with water media, cut precisely, with each element then placed in relationship to each other, layered and bonded together, create pieced or multi-plane paintings supported by colour, shape, line, and shadow.
The resulting pieced paintings and relief works are crisp and detailed, playful and quietly thoughtful, appealing to the viewer to look up and take in the world deeply with reverence and care, slowing their pace to contemplate our place in nature.