I am a collage artist. I approach collage from the perspective of a painter–my original creative discipline. Whatever type of traditional subjects I pursue–landscape, portrait, still life–the process of collage gives me scope to see them again as something completely new.
Teaching the art of collage to children originally provided the stimulus to find out what is possible when using collage. Ten years later, I am still exploring the limits of this medium and what I can and cannot do. I have not yet found its boundaries.
Rather than relying on found materials, my practice involves the development of all my materials. My palette of colours is derived from handmade, coloured collage papers which are integral to my artistic practice. I make all my own coloured papers using diverse techniques and each one is unique. I use acrylic paint with processes such as spatter painting, glazing, wax or alcohol resist, scratching, stamping, and monotype printing. I may use only one technique per paper or several.
The starting point for every collage is a drawing. I use drawing to experiment with and plan the composition and basic areas of colour in the image. My master drawing is then transferred, using tracing paper, section by section to the painted papers of my palette. The chosen papers are then cut, assembled, and glued onto wooden panels according to the drawn design. This is not a fast process. However the resulting work is very rich in both colour and texture and there is a lot to stimulate the eye of the viewer.
I find most of my subject matter in the rural community and the environment in which I have lived for most of my life. The animals and the landscape of southwest Quebec often feature in my collages.
Since 2008, Alyson has worked primarily in the medium of painted paper collage. She studied drawing and painting at Vanier College, The Saidye Bronfman School of Fine Art, and Concordia University, all in Montreal.
Her work is found in private collections in both Canada and the United States, and she is represented by galleries on both sides of the border. Alyson participates regularly in juried and group exhibitions throughout North America at such venues as The Marietta-Cobb Museum of Art (Marietta, Georgia), Stewart Hall Art Gallery (Pointe-Claire, Quebec), and with the National Collage Society. She has had several solo exhibitions in her native Quebec. Winner of numerous awards and prizes, she was a finalist in the Nonesuch Art on Paper Awards in 2016 and was also recently awarded a project grant from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec (CALQ) to complete her collage project “Rare Beasts”, a solo exhibition of collages created around the theme of rare and endangered farm animals. Alyson’s work has also been featured in North Light Books and has been licensed by World Art Group. Alyson Champ is an Artist Member of Culture Montérégie and the National Collage Society. She is also a farmer, an art educator, a classical violinist, holds an Honours Degree in Philosophy, and writes a humour column for a farming magazine.