After studying Visual Arts at l'Université du Québec à Montréal in the early 80s, René Morel pursued a career in visual arts as well as a career in digital art and special effects in the film industry. Over the last 35 years Morel has dedicated his time to creating 3D animation and drawing as well as his personal passion which is painting.
Morel's paintings are heavily influenced by classic portraits, namely 16th and 17th century Dutch and Flemish portraiture. His subjects are often very classical yet they are juxtaposed by various elements on the surface of the canvas. Heavier materials are often at play with lighter, more fluid and almost ethereal elements. Darker masses of color and texture often cut the surface of the bare canvas to give way to simple lines and contours that suggest anatomical elements, often hands or faces, leading the way to visually reconstructing the entire figure.
There is always a very strong gestural quality to his brush strokes; some of Morel's paintings might even seem to be in movement by their sheer energy. Often these elements are monochromatic much like mid-century abstract expressionism.
Morel would say the intention is to melt the realism of his subjects, superimposing hints of portraits with energetic movements, the result being a decomposition of the classic treatment of a portrait.