Canadian Fine Art
November 13 — 18, 2021
Auction begins to close at 7:00 pm ET
ARTHUR LISMER, O.S.A., R.C.A.
Sale of Canadian Art, The Women’s Committee of the Art Gallery of Ontario;
Private Collection, Waterloo, ON;
Waddington's, Toronto, ON, Canadian Fine Art, 20 Nov 2017, Lot 48;
Private Collection, Toronto, ON
Canada’s history, industry and culture, including its art, have been shaped by the landscape. For millennia, artists—Indigenous and immigrant, professional and amateur—have been inspired by the majestic beauty of this country’s forests, lakes, mountains and skies.
Arthur Lismer, who emigrated from England, was a founding member of the Group of Seven, arguably the most well-known and influential affiliation of artists this country has produced. Lismer took his first painting trip to Georgian Bay in 1913 and was a dedicated painter for his entire life. Lismer, Lawren Harris, A.Y. Jackson and other Group of Seven members sought to express the spirit of the young country through its landscape, creating images in vivid Impressionistic colour and bold brushstrokes. Lismer’s "Two Trees, B.C.” is an excellent example of his mid-career style, during which he replaced Impressionism with rough-hewn and angular approaches to form and paint handling. His paintings of this time also feature tightly framed compositions that focus on details, such as this painting’s vegetation in the foreground and the sliver of blue sky peeking through the dense canopy of trees.
Although Steve Driscoll’s work is often discussed in relation to the Group of Seven, he doesn’t simply draw inspiration from them; rather, his paintings extend and contemporize their legacy. Like Lismer and his cohorts, Driscoll experiences the landscapes he paints firsthand by camping, hiking and portaging throughout northern Ontario. However, instead of packing an easel, canvas and paint, Driscoll carries a camera. Current technologies play an important role in shaping his practice conceptually. Driscoll documents with digital cameras and then uses the images to produce works in-studio, often at sizes Lismer could only dream of. Driscoll’s instantly recognizable layers of tinted urethane give the works their reflective screen-like transparency. By capturing and manipulating his source material digitally, Driscoll seems to suggest that it has become easy – perhaps too easy – for people to re-shape and re-present the world as they want it to be seen. But, then again, isn’t this what artists—Lismer included—have always done?
Bill Clarke is a Toronto-based collector of contemporary art (and many other things) and a writer who has written for ArtReview, ARTnews, Modern Painters, Canadian Art and Border Crossings. Associate director of Angell Gallery from 2017 to 2019, Clarke has returned to his previous career in healthcare policy and communications.
Very good condition.
Please contact the specialist for further condition information.
All lots from this auction will be made available for pre-auction, in-person inspection and preview. This condition report has been prepared by Waddington’s as a courtesy and has been provided for guidance only. Each lot is offered in the condition it is in at the time of sale. Any reference to condition in the report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Waddington’s. Please note, certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot and may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot’s actual colour and shades, depending on your screen settings. Although Waddington’s takes great care in executing condition reports, Waddington’s specialists are not professional conservators or restorers and the report set forth is only a statement of opinion. For that reason this report is provided as a courtesy and is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice. Prospective buyers should bear in mind that this report will not disclose any imperfections which may only be revealed during the course of subsequent restoration. The Buyer agrees that Waddington’s will not be held responsible for any errors or omissions contained within the report. Buyers are reminded that Waddington’s warranties with respect to any property are limited as set forth in the Conditions of Sale and do not extend to condition.