At the turn of the 1960s, granular material began to prevail in the work of Fernand Toupin. Having just abandoned the Plasticien approach, he produced Îles sous le vent (1962), a painting similar to his Untitled of the same year and acquired by the Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent. These two works, which present textured clusters in an archipelago pattern, predominantly white and pastel throughout, heralded his first “white period,” begun in 1964.
Fernand Toupin was born in Montreal in 1930. He studied at the Montreal School of Fine Arts, along with Jean-Paul Jérôme. He was a co-signatory of the Manifeste des Plasticiens and co-founder of the Plasticiens movement in 1955. In 1958, he won first prize at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art’s Salon de la jeune peinture for his painting Cabriole. In 1967, the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal presented the retrospective Quinze ans de peinture de Fernand Toupin. A decade later the same museum presented Jauran et les premiers Plasticiens, a group show that showcased several works by Toupin.