Canadian Art

March 27 — April 01, 2021
Auction begins to close at 2 pm ET

Online Auction
LOT 16

Lot 16

PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.

PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.
Lot 16 Details
PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.

BOULEVARD GOUIN

oil on Masonite
signed
20 ins x 30 ins; 50.8 cms x 76.2 cms

Estimate $12,000-$16,000

Realised: $12,000
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report

Additional Images
PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.
  • PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.
  • PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.
  • PHILIP HENRY HOWARD SURREY, R.C.A.
Provenance:

Gauvreau Gallery, Montreal
Private Collection, Ontario

Note:

Of Philip Surrey’s work, Robert Ayre wrote in 1940 that it evoked “the loneliness and secrecy of the night, created by still, poised compositions, by sombre colours, by mysterious shadows and, here and there, an eerie light…There is a story in most of Surrey’s paintings: not an anecdote made obvious but a story implied for your own imagination to complete.”

Indeed, a painting that appears simple at first glance slowly reveals itself to be the intersection of three vignettes: the couple on promenade, a boater on the river, and a car looping around the bend on the road, visible only by its lights. Surrey guides the viewer through the scene masterfully, coaxing the eye around the canvas using the curves of the low-slung telephone wire, the mirrored sweep of the road and the backhand arc of the trees. The effect is cinematic, simultaneously serene and unsettling, in the way of a David Lynch film. The composition functions as a painterly choose-your-own-adventure story, with the viewer left to contemplate the anterior and posterior of this moment in time.

The pivotal moment takes place almost offstage, in the form of the approaching vehicle. Surrey frequently returned to the car as a subject; Gilles Daigneault wrote of Surrey that "...there is one thing that occupies a special place in the artist's imagination and which he often uses to express what he resents most: the automobile." Indeed, in this painting it is the car that will interrupt and perhaps even threaten the couple’s bucolic stroll.

The painting takes its title from a street of the same name, the longest on the Island of Montreal. Gouin wraps around the north side of the island, bordering the Riviere des Prairies.

CONDITION DETAILS

For condition information please contact the specialist.

LOT 16
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About Condition Ratings

  • 5 Stars: Excellent - No discernable damage, flaws or imperfections
  • 4 Stars: Very Good - Minor flaws or imperfections visible only under close inspection using specialised instruments or black light
  • 3 Stars: Good - Minor flaws visible upon inspection under standard lighting
  • 2 Stars: Fair - Exhibits flaws or damage that may draw the eye under standard lighting
  • 1 Star: Poor - Flaws or damage immediately apparent under standard lighting (examples: missing components, rips, broken glass, damaged surfaces, etc.)

Note: Condition ratings and condition details are the subjective opinions of our specialists and should be used as a guide only. Waddington’s uses due care when preparing condition details, however, our staff are not professional restorers or conservators. Condition details and reports are not warranties and each lot is sold “as is” in accordance with the buyer’s terms and conditions of sale. In all cases the prospective purchaser is responsible for inspecting the property themselves prior to placing a bid.