"La Femme Courageuse"

By Joseph Zamboni

 For the final project, an oil painting on canvas will be turned in; titled, "La Femme Courageuse," the painting depicts a lone female figure overlooking a ship at sunset. I would like to donate the piece to the Franco-American Center, or wherever Rhea sees fit. The intent of this work was to depict the nature of the early Franco-American women's experience. I apologize to everyone for being obscure with my project; I tried tracking down a digital camera but to no avail. I wanted to add a little information about my project in case anyone gets to see it. 
 Firstly, the silhouetted nature of both the figure and ship represent the anonymous nature of the many women who bravely came to a new land, our country, and founded its lands, only to be forgotten by the nation they birthed. While we do have examples of founding Franco-American women such as Jeanna Mance, who showed exemplary valor in not only being one of the first and only settlers of New France but starting the first hospital, this piece is for those who have been lost or forgotten by time. Thus a solitary figure is present to represent the individuality and self-sufficiency of the Franco-American woman. 
 I was most inspired in the courage of "Les Filles Du Roy," where these independent spirits came to a land that was not unfamiliar, but completely unknown by them. It would seem that these women would have formed intense bonds with one another, but also share in their individual fears and hopes in the new world. While painting this the image I found myself imaging being in a new world, and my transportation heading home without me. This moment in time, seems like it would be one of the hardest to deal with. Such intensity became my focus.
  I was also inspired by the bravery in "French Women of North America," by Corinne Rocheleau Rouleau, as it helped me rethink Žthe patriot' with musket, standing tall against Žattacks'. Although apocryphal, we have ingrained that men somehow were the fighters in colonial warfare, when in actuality there were not only many women who fought along side husbands, brothers, and sons, there were communities of women who had to defend themselves. For this reason, the portrait holds a posture that is straight and strong.
 The figure, standing tall, is also inspired by those who had courage when they had less or no free will, but still were integral to starting a new world, as we saw in Marguerite Ledoux, the French Bound-out Girl experiencing the New World with an English family.
The frame of the picture is also a part of the piece. This old strapping I found was a perfect addition to the painting because it reminded me of time and history, and about how the simple things hold a lot of stories. 
 Anyway, I hope that some of you get to see it, and enjoy as much as I have your finals.

"La Femme Courageuse"
Joseph Zamboni
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