Canadian Fine Art Auction

November 23, 2015

LOT 69

Lot 69


Lot 69 Details


oil, acrylic and spray paint on canvas, unframed
signed, titled and dated on the reverse
54 ins x 84 ins; 111.8 cms x 193 cms

Estimate $25,000-$30,000

Realised: $25,960
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report

Additional Images

Private Collection, New York


Katerina Atanassova et al., Kim Dorland, McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Kleinburg, 2014, pages 9 and 16.


Kim Dorland emerged on Canada's art scene shortly after graduating from York University with an M.F.A. in 2003. After 2005, he began the practice for which he is now known: building up his paintings with thick layers of impasto, directly from the paint tube or using knives and improvised implements, until the nodules of paint become so heavy that they sometimes require anchoring to the canvas with screws. Ever since then Dorland has been enjoying international fame as one of Canada's preeminent mid-career painters.

Dorland is a native of Wainwright, Alberta, and his work in the 2000s drew heavily on the youthful memories of his self-proclaimed "white trash" upbringing in the Prairies. Images of teenagers loitering in the woods, as in Wooded Area and Fire Pit of 2006, are quick to condemn the apathy of these youths while the artist's signature flares of fluorescent colour build an eerie landscape that is not to be trusted. Dorland's decade-long exploration of wooded scenes once elicited the comment: “I am in awe of nature but I'm also scared to death of it" in an interview.

Swimming in the Lake completes this narrative in a less direct, voyeuristic way than the more confrontational paintings Dorland produced between 2005 and 2010. Employing a wide array of painting techniques, including airbrush and thin, scraping brushstrokes, the canvas is kept to a low profile and the action centred within a proscenium arch of graffiti-like trees. The viewer stands deep in the forest, peering out into the clearing and the action on the lake; an evocative memory, or a cautionary tale.

In 2013 Dorland was the first artist to participate in the McMichael Art Collection's revamped artist-in-residence program, a venture which brought his work to more Canadians than ever before. The resulting canvases were shown alongside those of iconic Canadian painters like Tom Thomson, David Milne, and Frederick Varley in the exhibition You Are Here: Kim Dorland and the Return to Painting.

Dorland has shown internationally in Milan, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. His paintings are in a number of public collections, including that of the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Calgary’s Glenbow Museum, and Berlin’s Sander Collection, as well as numerous corporate and private collections.


For condition information please contact the specialist.

LOT 69

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.