TWO SCHOONERS AT SEA, 1980
signed; titled and dated to gallery label on the reverse
42 ins x 23 ins; 106.7 cms x 58.4 cms
June 09, 2022
This fine, early Nova Scotia seascape by Joe Norris was acquired from Toronto’s Mira Godard Gallery by its astute and distinguished collector when Norris’s and Maud Lewis’ work was collected as part of a vogue for folk art in the 1970s and early 1980s. As always, time and the intervening decades helped separate the wheat from the chaff. The artists’ works assumed a larger place in the history of Canadian representational painting while losing none of the directness and singularity that first distinguished them to discerning collectors.
The accomplishment and significance of Two Schooners at Sea is underlined by its history in a collection that also included major image-based works by Greg Curnoe and Lynn Donoghue, and abstractions by Charles Gagnon. Notwithstanding that, Two Schooners at Sea is successful because of its direct harmony. The image of the schooners, the briny sea and whitecaps, gulls, rocks, and lighthouse evoke Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada as a state of mind more than as a description of a place. Two Schooners at Sea is a complete ensemble in its painted frame decorated by the artist and with its size and scale has the boldness of few contemporary works.
Canadian Fine Art
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