BANFF, THE LAND: 17-73
acrylic on canvas
signed; also signed, titled and dated “1973” on the reverse, titled on the overflap and signed, titled and dated on the stretcher
33 ins x 56 ins; 83.8 cms x 142.2 cms
In 1973, Takao Tanabe accepted a full-time teaching position at the Banff School of Fine Arts. During his seven-year stay in Banff he produced a series of paintings of the prairies. The paintings, based on Tanabe’s large collection of photographs and sketches, were reduced to their essential forms, eliminating all recognizable landmarks. He later stated, “I don’t feel the tug to paint a view that somebody can recognize as being from their front porch or from some crossroads. [F]or me it’s…really a generalized sense of space. What I think about the prairie is perhaps romantic but it is an enormously simple-looking space and within all that simplicity it’s very, very rich, very subtle. I think those are the things I have been trying to get in the paintings.”
Nancy Tousley, “Takao Tanabe: The Prairie Paintings,” in Takao Tanabe, Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, 2005, page 88.
Private Collection, Toronto