Library and Archives Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Institutional links

Literary Archives

Previous | Table of Contents | Next

List of Fonds and Collections


Marie-Louise Gay fonds. - 1976-1988. - 4 m of textual record and graphic material.

Biographical Sketch

Artist Marie-Louise Gay was born in Quebec City, Quebec in 1952 to Franco-Ontarian parents. She spent the first few years of her life in Quebec (Sherbrooke, Montreal), Ontario (Oakville), and British Columbia (Vancouver), returning to Montreal when she was 13 years old. She studied at the Institut des arts graphiques (which became Cégep Ahuntsic) and took a program in animation at the Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal. In 1976, after some years as a freelancer for a range of Canadian periodicals, she accepted a proposal from Bertrand Gauthier to illustrate a children's book, Hou Ilva. Their collaboration continued with Dou Ilvien (1978) and Hébert Luée (1980). In 1978, Marie-Louise Gay polished her technique at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco. On her return to Montreal in 1981, Éditions de la courte échelle hired her as artistic director. From this point on, her career soared, as she was responsible for all aspects of production of her works. She published several books in quick succession in both French and English: De zéro à minuit (1981), La Sœur de Robert (1983), and the Drôle d'école series, and Moonbeam on a Cat's Ear (1986), Rainy Day Magic (1987), Angel and the Polar Bear (1988) and Willy Nilly (1990).

Scenario of MADEMOISELLE MOON by Marie-Louise Gay

Scenario in pencil of Mademoiselle Moon by Marie-Louise Gay, 1992.

The many awards she has received include the 1986 Canada Council Children's Literature Prize for illustrations published in a French book for the Drôle d'école series, and the same prize, also in 1986, for illustrations published in an English book, Dennis Lee's Lizzy's Lion. She won the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Award twice, in 1987 for Moonbeam on a Cat's Ear and in 1988 for Rainy Day Magic. The latter work also won the Governor General's Literary Award for illustrations. Gay also teaches illustration and style in the design department at Université du Québec à Montréal.

Scope and Content

The Marie-Louise Gay fonds covers the production period from 1976 to 1988, from her first illustrated book, Hou Ilva, to her 14th, Angel and the Polar Bear. The fonds contains manuscripts, typescripts, drafts, scenarios, unpublished drawings and original illustrations. The documentation outlines the various stages involved in producing a children's book from writing to illustrations.

Immediate Source of Acquisition: acquired from the author in 1991. [1991-15]

Language: material in the fonds is mainly in French.

Restrictions: none.

Finding Aid: finding aid available.

Previous | Table of Contents | Next