YisraPrevail YisraPrevail Artisan
15-5845 Monkland Avenue Montreal, Quebec H4A 1G4
514-969-3874 home page:



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A studio visit with Maria Isabel Rodriguez (a.k.a. “Yisra Prevail”) : A View onto the Alfa Series [in progress, October 2015]

“That is beautiful which is produced by internal necessity, which springs from the soul.” [Kandinsky, Concerning the Spiritual in Art, 1912]

A passionate reflection onto this life’s essence and an awe of spirituality compels Yisra Prevail to intuitively express herself in exuberant colour and rhythmic form.

A childhood spent in civil-war torn Guatemala , … subsequently well-travelled, …. immigrant to Canada, … Prevail wishes to identify her present-day self through a spontaneous exercise/exorcism of paint to canvas. Early Canadian career-achievements in fashion illustration / design / modeling, and public relations eventually led Prevail to a wish for a more personal freedom of purpose—finally to emerge herself in a fine arts studio practice—to paint independently.

Glancing at Prevail’s Alfa series there can be no avoidance of an art historical reference … a flashback in time and place to modern, 1911-13, Germany,—consider an emerging ‘Expressionist’ movement struggling with the critical acceptance of the bridge between representational and non-objective imagery – the beginnings of communication of emotion through the purely ‘visual’ elements of colour and form in painting (witness: Jugendstil, Der Blaue Reiter group, … ).

Artists are always limited in their choice of influences by taste and tenor of their own time. Where first generation Expressionists explored the metaphysical through orchestrated and articulate critical debate, art theory publication, artist associations, and theme-oriented group exhibitions, … ‘this’ generation expressionist Prevail has chosen to embark upon a personal, contemplative path (stream of consciousness) hoping —paint to canvas—to whisper —an essence of the divine power of creation— “a universal beauty held in heart, soul and spirit”.

In her Alfa series Prevail attempts to reveal some aspects of the concept of God as “the light of the world” – a ‘light’ streaming from deep-welled mystic conviction and radiating through-and-around nature’s four elements: water, earth, fire, air. In late proto-expressionistic fashion the artist has largely abandoned the outward world of appearances … extraneous ‘detail’ is eliminated … only the occasional compositional element can be related to objects in this representational realm. The gesture of a line or a contour might suggest a tree or flower or fish—all intentionally ambivalent in meaning however rich in a variety of symbolic interpretation (read: “the” garden / procreation / the sign of the presence of Christ). Shadow and substance of reading become interchangeable. … Emerge a dominant abstract force of colour and form.

Rhythmic, almost carnivalesque-busy compositions leave scarce place for the viewer’s eye or mind to rest. Bold, saturated contrasting colours are employed without inhibition … they bounce-off one another creating conflicting emotional effect. Juxtaposed advancing and receding colours (warm vs. cool) produce a push-and-pull in the illusion of space. Colours consistently change value, degree of saturation, and painterly touch—a measure of tension emerges. … Without evident foreground or background , the remaining continuity of interlacing forms – some flat, some convex, others concave – establish a swinging whiplash of glance onto this life’s plane.

The artist’s inner necessity manifests itself in a heart-felt passion to seek out a pantheist empathy with the vibrant flow of the blood of nature. That which was metaphysically experienced goes through a transformation/crystallization to become a painting. An elusive state of awareness dealing with absolute consciousness vs. the mystic source of all creation prevails.

Theason Luke, Montreal

Dawson College
Honours student graduate in Illustration and Design, May 2002

Galery Artus
Group exhibition,August 2003
Dawson Galery
Chosen to participate as ex student in a Group exhibition, October 2003
Art Expo Montreal
Chosen to expose artwork for the event, August 2006

Grafika Magazine Contest of best Illustrators and Photographers of Quebec
llustrator finalist for Lux 2002 contest (pg.123) on October 2002
Grafika Magazine Contest of best Illustrators and Photographers of Quebec
Illustration published as part of Lux 2003 contest (pg.147), October 2003
Bronfman Jewish Educational Centre
Illustrations for two school books, January 2002-October 2003

BLOG FEATURE: blog by Barbara Stroud recently featured Prevail on her “Emerging Artists” page. February 2016

L’Space Contemporain Art Gallery in Quebec City
Collective exhibition named “GESTES” planned for January 2017

My Artist Statement

" I have chosen to accept an innermost truth and awaken onto a reality.   All persons express multiple facets of being tangibly combining form and color of psychic- breath, spirit, soul and mind.  I wish to explore the painterly externalization of the universally obvious vs. the mystic." [Yisra]  

My Location

I am located in Montreal, Quebec.

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