DAVID BROWN MILNE
Collection of Hon. Vincent Massey, Port Hope (from David Milne, 1935)
Laing Galleries, Toronto (1958)
Dr. and Mrs. Harold M. Tovell, Bronxville, N.Y. (1959)
Kaspar Gallery, Toronto (ca. 1985)
Private Collection, Toronto
David Milne Jr. and David P. Silcox, David B. Milne: Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings, Volume 2: 1929-1953, Toronto, 1998, page 598, and page 600, no.304.16, reproduced.
Ian Thom (ed.), David Milne, Douglas & McIntyre, Vancouver, 1991, page 153, plate 101 for a related 1935 canvas entitled Sugar Bush in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada.
According to David Silcox, this work is “especially close in subject to David Milne’s drawings of the ‘interrupted vision motif’,” explained by Milne in a letter to Alice and Vincent Massey (August 20, 1934):
“The most interesting series of motives I have ever used were developed in what might be called interrupted vision pictures. The motive comes from the simplest and most common of occurrences. The novice photographer sidesteps and advances and retreats until he has a clear view of his subject, then snaps it. The result is often disappointing. The reason may be that he had left out, what, unnoticed gave the subject interest. He may have been standing in a sugar bush, interested in the bare ground with snow patches, the big sugar trees and little saplings, the figures and the sap buckets, but may have failed to notice the tree trunk at his side, cutting off part of his vision, or the branch in front of his face. Both were within his field of vision, though out of focus; and both had their effect; without them we miss the tantalizing mystery of the original view...Here is an opportunity for the painter... He can get a kick out of this interrupted vision, and can reproduce his thrill on canvas for those capable of receiving it.”
This painting is listed in David Silcox’s catalogue raisonné of the artist as “Whereabouts unknown”.
David Milne is currently the subject of a major retrospective exhibition, originating from the Dulwich Picture Gallery and traveling to other locations throughout Canada.