ALEXANDER YOUNG JACKSON, O.S.A., R.C.A.
MARCH IN THE BIRCH WOODS
An inscription by the artist in pencil on the reverse reads: “Clarence Gagnon, March in the Birch Woods, adapted by A.Y. Jackson. Owned by Art Gallery of Toronto.”
30 ins x 40 ins; 76.2 cms x 101.6 cms
This work was inspired by Clarence Gagnon’s canvas March in the Birch Woods painted in 1919, widely exhibited and now in the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario (a gift of the C.N.E. Association in 1965). A.Y. Jackson met Clarence Gagnon in 1899 when both men began taking classes at the Art Association of Montreal. When Jackson was in France with his brother Harry about a decade later, one of the first people he looked up was his old friend, Gagnon. The two painters kept up a lively correspondence over the ensuing decades and Jackson often visited Gagnon in Baie St. Paul.
Why Jackson decided to use Gagnon’s painting as inspiration for this work is not known but perhaps it was commissioned by the mill whose name is inscribed in pencil on the reverse. Jackson did take commissions for book illustrations (like Gagnon) and from commercial enterprises (see lot 63) so this may have been the case here. Regardless, it is a beautiful example of Jackson’s adeptness with a somewhat uncooperative medium.
Private Collection, Toronto
Department: Canadian Fine Art
Artist Groups: Group Of Seven