1952 - 2016
Corno (Johanne Corno) was born in 1952 in the Chicoutimi region. She left her birthplace to go study at the University of Quebec in Montreal. After receiving her Beaux-Arts degree, she chose to work on her art full time. The first gallery representing her was the Clarence Gagnon Gallery in Montreal. She was very well known in her country by the end of the 80s’. Popular with art collectors, she exhibited her work across Canada.
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A woman of belief and will, she made the daring choice of moving to New York in 1992, taking only her energy and dreams with her. Her beginnings were humble. She was working in a small studio, collaborating with other artists on group exhibits and various artistic events. A big step in her career happened when the Steuben Glass Gallery on Madison Ave. NY chose to display her art, like they did for artists like Georgia O’Keefe and Salvador Dali. Her international career really began when the Opera Gallery, which owns 13 galleries around the world, also displayed her art. After New York, Corno then had her work exhibited in London, Paris, Venice, Monaco, Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul and Dubai. At one point, she became their most sought after contemporary artist.
After that, solo exhibits were the ones mobilizing all of her work. In 2006, her success brought her back to Montreal, where it all started, and she opened the AKA Gallery which only featured her own work. In 2013, a documentary by Guy Edoin featured her and her life. Museums, private and public collections across the world now showcase her art.
She has created a style of her own that inspired many contemporary artists, especially in Quebec where a sort of movement formed around her style. We can recognize a Corno painting by their big format as well as the men’s torsos and the women’s faces, typically with luscious lips. Her unique gesture and her expressionist brush strokes make her contemporary portraits easily recognizable. Her work is a testimony of her love of faces and feminine beauty.
In 2016, she died at 64 years old.