Biography of Jacques Arseneault

Jacques Arseneault was born in 1956, in Dalhousie, New Brunswick. In 1978, he completed a Bachelor’s degree in visual arts at Université de Moncton, in New Brunswick, and in 1980, a Master’s in plastic arts at Université de Paris VIII. He taught plastic arts at the CÉGEP in Jonquière, Quebec (1980-1981), then taught print-making part time in the Visual Arts Department at Université de Moncton (1981-1983). In 1984, he trained in wood engraving at Atelier de l’Île, in Val-David, Quebec. From 1992 to 1993, he pursued professional development as an engraver in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A master engraver, he has taught print-making since 1984, as a professor in the Visual Arts Department of Université de Moncton.

Literature is an important source of inspiration for Arseneault, abundantly present in his work to emphasize the visual components. He has provided interpretations of works by Franz Kafka and Raymond Roussel. In Monotypes, his 1990 exhibition, his works were inspired by Danser au Kacho 2 and Le programme du poème, by Acadian poet Gérald Leblanc.

Arseneault was a participant in over fifteen major exhibitions. Notable among his solo ventures are Kafka (1985), a series of nine wood block prints on themes from the works of that novelist, and Pair of Dice/Coup de dé (1992). Among group exhibitions, he participated in the travelling exhibits Quoi faire? Quoi dire? (1986) curated by Charlotte Townsend-Gault, Jeunes contemporains (1987-1988) organized by the London Regional Art Gallery in Ontario, and several others shown in Canada and France.

His engraving La seconde moitié du paradis (1991) was awarded to the Viewers’ Choice as La Vague, at the 1991 edition of the International Festival of Francophone Cinema in Acadie (FICFA), (Moncton).

While Jacques Arseneault is vitally engaged in teaching visual arts, he is also involved in other capacities in the artistic community. He is a member of Galerie Sans Nom (Aberdeen Cultural Centre, Moncton), Strut Gallery (Sackville, New Brunswick), and the Print and Drawing Council of Canada. A founding pillar of Imago Printshop (Aberdeen Cultural Centre, Moncton), he was its president for several years. He has repeatedly participated in Art en direct, a fund-raiser for Galerie Sans Nom.

The works of Jacques Arseneault are included in the collections of the Canada Council Art Bank, the New Brunswick Art Bank and the Galerie d’art Louise-et-Reuben-Cohen of Université de Moncton, as well as several private collections. In 1994, he was awarded a creation, travel and documentation grant by the New Brunswick Arts Board.