Well-known businessman and former Olympic cyclist Louis Garneau, who continues to reveal his artistic talent by putting in new efforts for the benefit of the Fondation du Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, engaged in a live painting performance last Saturday, to the delight of guests and media attending the “Contrasts” fundraiser.
Louis Garneau has taken up the challenge to create a unique and live canvas, in front of those present, who could then bid to acquire the painting as part of the public sale and auction held to benefit the Fondation du Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec.
The event took place in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere, in the great hall of the museum, where the audience could dance to the same music the artist listened to on his iPod during the creation of his two works. "It was a great challenge," said Louis Garneau. "It is certain that the public presence completely changes the context," he says with a smile, "but it was also memorable and very rewarding, allowing direct contact between the artist and the public at the very moment of creation."
Louis Garneau, who has decided that from now on all proceeds from the sale of his paintings will go to charity, has already donated a previous series of 12 paintings, "The World", to the Fondation, most of which have been sold already. A "Louis Garneau" currently trades at $10,000, bringing his contribution to the fundraising campaign of the museum’s foundation to approximately $120,000, not counting Saturday night’s production. Incidentally, one of his paintings is on display in Lance Armstrong’s bicycle store, Mellow Johnny's, in Austin, Texas.
After a cycling career filled with success leading up to the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, Louis Garneau the businessman has made his company, Louis Garneau Sports Inc., a Quebec success story selling its products in over 30 countries. Today, he turns back to his first love, the arts, an area in which he holds a BA from the School of Visual Arts from Laval University, and devotes some of his free time to painting while benefitting many charities and causes close to his heart, including the expansion of the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec.