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Gaétan Caron

"Reflections of Nature

Mendocino, California

A Fine Art Documentation by Gaétan Caron

 "We can never have enough of nature”

Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods

“It was early spring of 1999 when I first visited our old heirloom orchard nestled up against a serene and secluded valley in the hills of Mendocino County, Northern California. I was right away struck by the warmth of the sun, the intensity of the light, the blossoms of the Santa Rosa plum and Manzanita trees, and the sound of the running creeks mixed with the buzzing of the bees. This place has since become home, where my family and I live full-time, in harmony with nature, which is at the center of my inspiration, creativity and spirituality.  I call this place "The Land.”

The ninth of a French Canadian family of 10 children, I grew up in rural Québec on a small dairy farm.  We had a big garden nearby a river, very much lost in the woods. I then spent most of my early adulthood experiencing urban Montréal, the other distinctive culture of Québec. I inherited my mother’s passion for arts and crafts, leading me to specialize in ceramic arts at l’École de Céramique Bonsecours in Montréal. Life eventually brought me to San Francisco where I co-founded Lost Art Salon with my friend Rob. Meanwhile, a new project of restoring an heritage fruit orchard called for the construction of a fully off the grid sustainable hay/bale and earth home. (Covered in: 2014 SF Chronicle article “Back to the land” by Anh-Minh Le, "Off the Grid Homes, case studies for sustainable living" by Lori Ryker; Sunset Magazine November 2008, “Kaleidoscope cabin: in the woods of Northern California”; and “Neverending Story”, Anthology Magazine Summer 2011 ).

The “school” of collecting fine art through Lost Art Salon mixed with my rich and remote life in Northern California inspired me to continue working on my personal creative expression. Photography and painting have proven to be my preferred modes of expressing my connection to the land and documenting the beauty of Mendocino, California. The lengthy process of one medium coupled with the immediacy of the other strike the right balance for me. Paint applied to a canvas reminds me of the meditative nature of hand molding clay, my first passion within the art world. Photography allows me to capture those unique moments when seasons are traveling through their cycles, setting the light in harmony with the time of the day. The graphic power of photography with its techniques of cropping, foreshortening and near abstraction is incorporated into my painting. I use the camera to reinvigorate painting and in return, my photography is enriched by the dialogue with painting."

“We need the tonic of wildness...At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.”

Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods

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87230- Gaétan Caron, 2015, Oil on Canvas, 21.25"x25.25" Framed
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87230- Gaétan Caron, 2015, Oil on Canvas, 21.25"x25.25" Framed