ALBERT JACQUES FRANCK, A.R.C.A.
Gadatsy Gallery, Toronto
Private Collection, Montreal
Albert Franck (1899-1973) was a man known for his conviviality and an evening at his home would surely include local celebrities and other bon vivants. Therefore, it is interesting to consider that his house portraits rarely, if ever, show any overt signs of human presence. Harold Town, who wrote the essay for the 1973 catalogue to Franck's retrospective exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario asserted that "people were for his secular time." Franck and his wife, the artist Florence Vale, played den parents to the emerging group of painters who would become the Painters Eleven. The Francks lived in the Village across from Mary Johns restaurant near the present day Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto. Augusta Avenue is located within the neighbourhoods through which Franck habitually wandered while looking for source material. However, by the time this work was painted in 1971 the Francks were living in Yorkville and the walk to Augusta would have been some twenty minutes away on foot.