For the subject matter of his painting, André Ethier relies completely on his subconscious and the subconscious of others. As a result, the theme that he found himself representing in this series of paintings is the exploration of undiscovered lands by the symbolic male and the sexualization of foreign culture through the xenophobic eye. In this schema, the symbolic woman is included as a foreigner, which allows for the representation of the male and his sexual domination of some imagined wilderness.
In representing the characters of these undiscovered lands, Ethier describes a grotesque landscape of fear and farce. The carnivalesque nature of this landscape and its inhabitants implies that his subconscious has somewhat equated comedy and horror in his understanding of the unknown, so that each plays an important role in the creation of the “foreign” as threatening and unsettling. His expressionistic portraits function like stills from some graphic video game that hint at the nature of the greater fantastical landscape that his creatures inhabit.
André Ethier lives and works in Toronto, Canada. Earlier this year he exhibited works in the gallery’s project room. This will be his first exhibition in the main gallery.