Francine Gravel was born in Montreal on March 17th, 1944. She studied at the Montreal School of Fines Arts under Albert Dumouchel and Pierre Ayot and obtained a Diploma in painting and printmaking in 1965.  She then obtained a teaching certificate in 1966 and taught in Quebec and Ontario in a number of schools and art centers.  From 1967 - 1969 she travelled in Europe, working for the most part in Belgium. Upon her return to Canada, she worked in Toronto then moved to Calgary, where she taught at the Alberta College of Arts until 1976. She then accepted a teaching position at Concordia University from 1976 - 1977 before moving to Vancouver, where she lived and worked until 1986.  At that time she took up residence in British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, where she now has her permanent studio. She has worked here as a painter, printmaker and poet since 1978.

Over the past 39 years, Francine has had more than 85 solo exhibitions, as well as numerous group exhibitions to her credit.  Her work has been exhibited in Belgium, Canada, England, Monaco and the USA.   Francine has received a Diplome d'honneur from the International Arts Guild, Les Palmes d'Or des Beaux-Arts and a special mention from the Jury at Monte Carlo in 1969.  She was also a winner in 2001 for the series on folklore and legend for the Royal Canadian Mint competition.  Her drawing portrayed the Polish legend of "The Shoemaker in Heaven". 

Francine is a real "renaissance woman" who bring her many talents and rich experience to the Avalon Advisory.  Her paintings reflect the vibrant sense of joy, magic and wonder that is so essential to the Avalon vision. She is interested in all philosophies and the power of the human spirit in relation to health of the body and mind.  She studies and loves to read the new discoveries of science and psychology.  All her interests and relationships are a source of growth and inspiration that expand her vision and eventually become translated in her works.  Music, dance and theatre are also great source of inspiration as well.  

"The Universe and my Muse whispered and gave me the seeds which I then planted on my canvas. Each day I saw them grow and I trusted their wisdom to uplift my spirit and yours.  I lived through this: the dance of life.  Here I share with you the harvest I received with love" (Francine Gravel August 26, 2011).

Prizes:

2007
Academician (gold)
Ambassador National (gold)
Artist of the Year (silver)
La Bourse Denis Beauchamp (multi-art)

2009
Academician (advisor)
Lifetime Achievement Award (Okanagan Arts Awards)

2011
Title of Master in the Fine Arts

Collections:

Francine's work is found around the world with private collections in Africa, Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, Germany, Holland, Japan, Spain, and USA.

There are a number of public collections including:  University of Calgary, Calgary; University of Alberta, Edmonton; Concordia University, Montreal; Libre, Montreal; University of Manitoba, Winnipeg; University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon; The National Library of Canada, Ottawa; la Bibliotheque Nationale au Quebec, Montreal; The Metropolitan Toronto Reference Library, Toronto; The Vancouver Library, Vancouver; The Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Edmonton; The Glenbow Foundation, Calgary; The House of Alberta, London, UK; The Albert 1 Royal Library, Belgium; The National Hoger Institute en Koninklijke Acadeamie Voor Shone Kunsten, Belgium; Xerox Canada, Toronto; Tolten Interior, Ottawa; Laing Property Development Corp; Harper, Grey Easton & Company, Vancouver; Gardner, McDonald & Company; BC Systems Corp, Victoria; various BC government buildings in Victoria; McGill University, Montreal; The Walter C. MacKenzie Health Science Centre, Edmonton; Sheraton Hotel, Saskatoon; Telus Corporation, Edmonton and others.