Michel Binette is one of Quebec’s leading bronze sculptors working in the figurative tradition. Born in Montreal in 1948 and mainly self-taught, he studied with master sculptor Emile Brunet and honed his skills early on as an anatomical illustrator for the University of Montreal. In 1979, Binette received wide recognition for his sculpture of Canadian hockey legend Maurice “Rocket” Richard. Since then he has established himself as a master sculptor concerned with portraying important Canadian historical, political and cultural figures, as well as paying homage to the country’s agricultural and craft workers.
Binette’s sculptures include an homage to Camille Claudet and Rodin; First Nations Chief Tecumseh for the Chatham Historical Society; a monument of Adelard Godbout and sculpture of Montcalm for the Quebec Parliament; and Maria Chapdelaine for the Chatham Library. His friendship with the famous American artist Andrew Wyeth and Canadian abstract painter Jean-Paul Riopelle inspired him to create moving sculptures of each.
Binette’s works have been featured in many one-person exhibitions in Quebec, Ontario and New York state. As testimony to his artistic lineage, in 1980, Binette was selected as the only living artist to exhibit with the Old Masters—Cornelius Krieghoff, Clarence Gagnon, Suzor Coté and Albert Frank among others—at the prestigious Kaspar Gallery in Toronto. Binette continues to receive many public and private commissions. His works appear in permanent collections in Canada, England, France and the U.S.A.