Launch of Riopelle Studio

A New Free Educational, Interactive Platform to Bring Riopelle to Canadian Schools

Riopelle Studio Will Allow Tens of Thousands of Students to Immerse Themselves in the Artist’s Vast Universe on the Occasion of His Centenary Celebrations

MONTREAL, September 13, 2022 – As students across Canada are going back to school this month, and just a few weeks ahead of the official start of world-renowned artist Jean Paul Riopelle’s 100th anniversary celebrations, the Riopelle Foundation launches Riopelle Studio, an educational platform which now makes it possible for teachers to bring the country’s 5 million elementary- and high school-grade students to discover Riopelle’s oeuvre and vision.

This interactive platform, entirely accessible online and free of charge, offers plenty of playful, stimulating tools and resources intended for Canadian schools, both in English and French, including:

Developed over the past year by the Riopelle Foundation’s team, under the direction of art education expert Dr. Andrée-Caroline Boucher, and in collaboration with Montreal creative agency Akufen, Studio Riopelle was inspired by the best practices in the fields of elementary and high school education to the arts, using the most recent technologies to offer Canadian schools a comprehensive, easy-to-use and accessible tool. The platform can be used either on an interactive whiteboard (IWB), a computer, tablet or phone.

Riopelle Studio was also based on various educational resources developed over the years by Yseult Riopelle, author of the Catalogue raisonné de Jean Paul Riopelle, Honorary Commissioner of Riopelle’s Centenary Celebrations and daughter of the artist.

As for the Canada-wide cultural mediation program Dialogues: Encounters with Riopelle from Sea to Sea, for which a call for projects is currently ongoing until October 10, Riopelle Studio will benefit from a generous grant from the Department of Canadian Heritage. Details regarding the Government of Canada’s financial support for the Riopelle Centenary Celebrations’ official program will be announced soon.

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Making the Canadian Youth Discover Riopelle’s Oeuvre

Through five themes related to the work of Riopelle – nature, freedom, the Earth, play and trajectories –, students will be invited to create unique artworks inspired by Riopelle’s oeuvre. These artworks will be virtually showcased on the Rio Gallery throughout Riopelle’s centenary year in 2023.

The learning process comprises four steps:

  1. Introduction: Covering all the important information about the project, including a collection of works organized by theme, showing how each one suffuses Jean Paul Riopelle’s artistic process;
  2. Preparation: Students will be invited to appreciate contemporary art and pay close attention to various works by Riopelle through entertaining and educational art appreciation games;
  3. Creation: Thanks to a series of “art nuggets” – short and straightforward video clips providing step-by-step instructions – students will be able to use their newly acquired knowledge to create their own artworks inspired by the themes and techniques that were dear to Riopelle throughout his career;
  4. Integration: This last step offers the opportunity to reflect on what was learned during the process.

A Resource Guide for Teachers

With the objective of providing Canadian teachers with comprehensive tools to help them develop their projects, the Riopelle Foundation, in collaboration with the Art Canada Institute, has recently published a teacher resource guide.

Titled Abstraction and the Inspiration of Nature through the art of Jean Paul Riopelle, the guide can be downloaded for free online, in English and French:


“In the 1930s, a young Jean Paul Riopelle discovered the arts thanks to his teacher Henri Bisson at Saint-Louis-de-Gonzague Elementary School, in his Montreal childhood neighbourhood. His growing passion would later bring him to become one of the greatest ambassadors for Canadian culture worldwide. The Riopelle Foundation is thus extremely proud to launch the Riopelle Studio educational platform with the objective of inspiring the next generation of artists through Riopelle’s impressive artistic legacy. As the artist’s centenary year will begin in less than a month, we wished to start these great celebrations along with the Canadian youth. Through it, Riopelle’s avant-garde vision, which is more relevant than ever, will continue to live on for decades to come.”

– Manon Gauthier, Executive Director of the Riopelle Foundation and General Commissioner of the artist’s centenary celebrations

Never-Before-Seen Celebrations for a Canadian Artist

Orchestrated by the Jean Paul Riopelle Foundation under the Co-Chairpersonship of France Chrétien Desmarais and Thomas d’Aquino, and with Yseult Riopelle, author of the Catalogue raisonné de Jean Paul Riopelle and daughter of the artist, as Honorary Commissioner, the festivities surrounding Riopelle’s 100th anniversary in 2023 will offer the general public a unique opportunity to (re)discover this Montreal-born artist who has marked on the history of art. Featuring a wide variety of artistic disciplines, from classical music to circus, theater, literature, as well as with the participation of museum and educational institutions, the official program of the centenary celebrations will give rise to a multitude of cultural projects in Canada and around the world. Starting in the fall of 2022 under the theme “One With Nature”, a host of prestigious partners will contribute to making these celebrations – the most important ever planned for a Canadian visual artist – a resounding success, promoting Canadian talent and inspiring new generations of artists through Riopelle’s impressive legacy.

Discover the centenary celebrations’ official program on

About the Jean Paul Riopelle Foundation

Envisioned by Riopelle in the 1960s and established in 2019 by a group of Canadian philanthropists, the Jean Paul Riopelle Foundation’s mission is to celebrate and broaden the appreciation of Riopelle and his Oeuvre in the history of Canadian and international art, to support and inspire emerging visual artists, to encourage creative exploration and experimentation, and to promote teaching and learning. The Foundation also serves as a repository and centre of scholarship in the documentation, publication and discourse on the Oeuvre of Riopelle. The year 2023 will mark the centenary of his birth and will be the occasion of an ambitious celebration program in Canada and worldwide.

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Sources : Jean Paul Riopelle Foundation

Renseignements : Raphaël Melançon
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