... in three bullet points
- Swiss born artist residing on the U.S. East cost (Somerville, MA).
- drawings, paintings, illustrations on paper, cardboard and iPad, in pencil, china ink, acrylics and more.
- 1st solo exhibition in 2011, regular solo and collective exhibitions since (Art Buvette Fribourg, G-60 Lausanne, Aperti Lausanne, Gallerie Iris Pully etc.)
... the longer version
Thank you a lot for visiting gregoart.org, I appreciate your visit. My name is Grégoire Loretan and I was born in Switzerland. Maybe you can guess where the pseudonym 'Gregoart' comes from. Its French pronunciation is how you pronounce my first name. English is not my mother tongue, therefore my apologies for the various mistakes you may find on this website.
My father, Barthélemy Loretan, was a painter, and one of my aunts is an artist. Growing up in an artistic environment I have been drawing for as long as I can remember. Like most kids I guess. But unlike most kids, I kept drawing through my teenage years. I started writing and drawing short comics, inspired by artists such as Frank Miller, Jack Kirby, Barry Smith, Robert Crumb, Will Eisner, Moebius, David Mazuchelli, and Dave McKean.
After two unsuccessful applications to art school, I enrolled at university, thinking I could still draw in my spare time. But this was not the case: I studied, I partied, I played basketball (I’m 6’6’’ like Michael Jordan but the analogy stops there). And I started collecting vinyl records. Soul, jazz, funk, psychedelic rock and hip hop mostly. I started dj-ing and crate digging. Music has remained a huge passion to this day, and I am still a vinyl addict with little chance for rehab I'm afraid. A M.A. and a post-grad in social sciences later I started my corporate career in PR/communications. With not much leisure time on my hands, all I did was doodle during the most boring meetings. Becoming an artist seemed more impossible than ever. Working in an agency for some time has made me realize how far my skills were from those of graphic designers, who master software such as Photoshop, Illustrator or Indesign. I was an analog guy in a digital world, still listening to vinyl and drawing the old school way.
In 2008, the analog guy purchased an iPhone and it changed his life.
It really did: I started drawing again on a daily basis during my commute to work. Since I had always liked drawing small illustrations, I wasn't botheredby the 'small' screen (remember the iPhone 1?) but actually stimulated by the format. Yet, I switched to an iPad two years later and started to use an app with vector drawing.
My first exhibition took place in Lausanne 2011. I wanted my digital drawings to become physical again, so I printed them on large Forex plaques as a 10 piece limited edition. The feedback was so overwhelming that I felt encouraged to keep drawing regularly. Art Buvette, in my hometown Fribourg, hosted my second exhibition in 2012.
By that time, I had become Head of Public Relations of an industry leader, which was incompatible with being an artist. In search of an adventure, and still afraid to follow my artistic passion, I joined an international start-up (as Head of Communications). It didn't leave me more time for drawing, but the job was exciting. It wakened my entrepreneurial spirit. I still doodled in the train, and I was more and more determined to take it to the next level.
And then I discovered Neil Gaiman's New Year's wishes. Neil Gaiman who, together with Alan Moore, has always been my favourite comic book writer, wrote:
May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art -- write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.
Since the beginning of 2015, I have drawn every day. And I have surprised myself by creating gregoart.org.