Jean Dallaire was born in Quebec in 1916 in the Hull region of Quebec. He began drawing at the age of only 11, and at age 17 rented his first studio in the Hull Metropolitan Stores Limited building. He studied from the age of 16 at the Technical School and then at the Central Technical School in Toronto.
He moved to the Dominicans Monastery in Ottawa, offering him a shelter, a workshop, and artist's equipment. It was during this stay that the young Dallaire developed a great interest in the art of the Renaissance and for Italy.
Dallaire then goes to Montreal to attend classes at the Montreal School of Fine Arts for a period of 6 months. It was at this moment that he received a scholarship and left for Paris in 1938. He met Alfred Pellan, a key figure for the young artist Dallaire. Also, he received the teachings at the Sacred Art Workshop by André Lhote, French painter and engraver and representative of the cubist movement of the time.
His European discoveries were interrupted in 1940, when the German army took control of Paris. Jean Dallaire is imprisoned in Saint-Denis as his compatriot the artist Paul-Vanier Beaulieu. Both will remain incarcerated until liberation in 1944. During the years of captivity, he continues to paint different subjects such as still lifes, portraits in addition to studying Italian and to learn the tapestry. Moreover, he undertakes an internship in 1949 at Jean Lurcat in Aubusson, France.
The painter returned to Quebec in 1945 and accepted a professorship at the Montreal School of Fine Arts the following year. He held this position until 1952. In the meantime, in 1947, he exhibited at the Cercle Universitaire de Montreal which allowed him to be known as an artist. He then became an animated film producer with historical and folk themes for the National Film Board in Ottawa and Montreal from 1952 to 58.
He returned to settle permanently in France in Vence in 1959. He died prematurely at the age of 49 in 1965.
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