Canadian Art Select Online Auction

Auction begins to close:
March 15, 2018 at 12:00 am ET

Online Auction
LOT 15

Lot 15


Lot 15 Details


acrylic on canvas
signed and dated ‘80 on the reverse; also signed, titled and dated 1980 on the overflap and on the stretcher
72 ins x 60 ins; 182.9 cms x 152.4 cms

Estimate $5,000-$6,000

Realised: $5,700
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report

Additional Images

The Isaacs Gallery Ltd., Toronto
Private Collection, Toronto


Gordon Rayner (1935-2010) first appeared on the Toronto art scene in the late 1950s at a time when Abstract Expressionism had captured the imagination of young Toronto artists. Beginning as a commercial artist, Rayner was introduced to painting by his friend, Dennis Burton, with whom he shared an interest in jazz. Jazz was an integral part of the Toronto art scene, and Rayner (a drummer) became part of the long-lived Artists’ Jazz Band along with three other local artists. In the 1970s, Rayner made multi-media collages whose compositions were unified by passages of painting, and in 1978, a book on oriental carpets that he received as a gift was to have a significant impact on his work. In 1980, visiting critic Donald Kuspit detected a “Persian sensibility” in Rayner’s work. The Music of the Bill Smith Ensemble, painted in 1980, the year the ensemble was formed, recalls some of Rayner’s earlier work: the collage-like quality, the stained portion of the canvas from his post-painterly period, and a passage of expressionistic painting (applied directly from the tube). The dominant central motif, framed by decorative bands of bold colour, may be the influence of oriental rugs and of his travels through the East. Rayner has effectively captured the diverse quality of the sounds produced by the instruments in Smith’s ensemble: the rich red background could be the double bass; the pink sound waves, the violin; and the expressive web of lines festooning the top of the yellow frame—Smith’s saxophone or clarinet.


For condition information please contact the specialist.

LOT 15

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.