Adrienne Bouchard Langlois was raised on a small farm in Saskatchewan. She lived in Winnipeg, Manitoba, most of her adult life. She and her husband, the poet Dan Fraser, now divide their time between Victoria, British Columbia, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Adrienne traces her intense desire to be an artist to the first art lesson given her at age 5 by her eldest sister, who taught her to use a little watercolour paint box. She owes a debt of gratitude to two teachers, Professor Mina Forsyth of the University of Saskatchewan Fine Arts Department, and Ruth Harris of Aurora Art Studio in Winnipeg. In the late sixties, it was Professor Forsyth who first introduced Adrienne to design through non-representational art, an exciting revelation to the young woman from a small rural community. In the early eighties, Ruth Harris, who taught drawing, design and the use of colour, supported Adrienne in developing her inclination to work in a non-representational style.
In 1979, an exchange program through the University of Manitoba allowed Adrienne and her family to live in France for a year. The focus of every school holiday during this stay, and of subsequent trips to Europe, was to visit great museums. Amongst the wealth of art treasures on display, it was the blue in a painting by Vincent Van Gogh that most thrilled her. Similarly, in Canada, Adrienne’s first glimpse of a brilliantly coloured painting by Norval Morrisseau struck a deep chord in her heart that continues to resonate.
In 1991, Adrienne received the first of many commissions for St. Boniface Cathedral. This required an expansion of her skills, in order to illustrate Gospel readings in large works viewed by parishioners of all ages. Introducing the narrative in her art opened new vistas for her secular work also, as evidenced later in book illustrations and murals.
Adrienne’s goal to work full-time as an artist was realized at the age of 52, when she resigned from her career in translation. This was the beginning of a prolific and fulfilling time, coinciding as it did with her son Roland Gatin’s emerging as a sculptor and gaining international recognition for his stone carvings.
Adrienne’s art reflects her vision of life, in which the spiritual and temporal worlds are intimately related. She says “I believe that the Holy Spirit helps me in this work. Sometimes I work very hard to draw a satisfactory line, while at other times a truly beautiful line just seems to appear. These lines, I feel, are a gift of the Holy Spirit, and they move me with wonder and gratitude.”
Bold colour and strong lines feature prominently in Adrienne’s art. She works in several media, producing images covering a wide range of subjects. Her work has been shown in solo and in group exhibitions, and is now widely disseminated in Canada, the United States, England and Sri Lanka.