Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Moonlight And Voyage

Today I start out with this shot taken from within the Canadian section of the National Gallery. A good number of paintings surround this traditional First Nations canoe, including some works of The Group of Seven.

The Self Made Man is the title of this 1926 bronze by the Quebec artist Alfred Laliberte. It is both allegory and self portraiture by the artist, figuratively carving himself out of the block, while also serving as a metaphor for the benefits of hard work and determination.

The Canadian artist James Wilson Morrice spent time in the Old World like many artists of his time, and this painting, Notre Dame, Paris, dates back to 1901-02, from a sojourn in France.

Here we have a perspective shot of this particular section.

These are small sketchboard style paintings all belonging to Tom Thomson and the members of the Group of Seven, the artists who captured Canadian scenes in different ways in the first half of the twentieth century. Thomson, who died before the Group's formal founding, influenced their love of nature. These artists would spend time in the wilds of Canada, painting on these small canvases in the field and transferring the ideas in full in their studios. The National Gallery has a great many works by Thomson and the members of the Group.

This one is a Thomson. Moonlight was painted around 1913-14.

Here we have something different. Passing Rain is by Elizabeth Wyn Wood, done in 1928-29. A marble  sculpture, it takes the landscape motif and applies it to sculpture, capturing the energy of a northern storm in a new way.

Here amid works belonging to the Group of Seven and their contemporaries are indigenous works, typical of the Canadian galleries, where a mix of European influenced and First Nations art are grouped together. Such is the case with these two items. Ellen Neel, a member of the Kwakwaka'wakw First Nation in British Columbia, carved Model Pole in 1955. Beside it and facing the opposite way is First Man Mask, another carving by Neel, done in the 1960s. Both works feature red cedar.

Another wide view of one of the gallery spaces here. This features display cases with carvings done in particular by Inuit sculptors from the mid-twentieth century onwards, taking traditional methods and applying them in new ways.

This is a painting by Emily Carr, dating to 1912. Memalilaqua, Knight Inlet is an oil painting by the contemporary of the Group of Seven. Carr, a British Columbia artist, had a life long fascination with the Coastal First Nations, and that shows repeatedly in her work.

Today I finish with two views of the same work. Carl Beam, an Anishinaabe artist, created this sculpture, Voyage, out of wood in 1988. It is a 1.5 scale model of the Santa Maria, a response to the arrival of Columbus in the New World, presenting the explorer's mighty ship as eviscerated, in the manner of a whale that's met an untimely death.


  1. I like the 1887 painting of Notre Dame, although it's difficult to determine where the church is. And that would have been prior to the construction of the Eiffel Tower.

  2. I like the canoe and the ships.

  3. Seems to be a very interesting Gallery !

  4. I like those inuit carvings most.

  5. ...a wonderful early collection.

  6. You do such a good job of showcasing your indigenous peoples.


  7. Very nice museum. I like the carvings and the painting, Notre Dame, Paris.

  8. Hope to see this collection one day! Thank you for the tour.

  9. @Lowell: Virginia would probably know the spot Morrice painted from!

    @Nancy: I do as well.

    @Gattina: it's a wonderful place.

    @Francisco: thank you.

    @Marian: they're beautifully done.

    @Bill: it certainly is.

    @Tom: I agree.

    @Janis: the reorganizing of the Canadian galleries to include indigenous works was a very good idea.

    @Beth: it is, yes.

    @Bill: thanks!

    @Marie: if you're ever out this way, you should see it.

  10. The boats certainly make a great focal point in the exhibit rooms.

  11. This looks like a very impressive museum.

  12. The Group of Seven is my favorite. I can spend a lot of time looking at their work.

  13. A very nice museum, thanks for the tour, William !

  14. It looks like a wonderful gallery!
    I love handmade boats.

  15. @Janey: yes, they do.

    @Sharon: it is. I enjoy it each time I visit.

    @Red: I love seeing their work.

    @Karl: you're welcome.

    @Tammie: it's a splendid institution.

  16. The first nations art is beautiful.

  17. Such grandeur! I am amazed at what people create.

    The quiet, snowy scene in the white frame is my favorite.

  18. Claude Monet was painting in Norway.
    One of the images you have put out looks a bit like his art.
    Anyway, interesting and nice posting.
    My posting today will show YOU that we also have TULIPS in town, but nothing like you have in Ottawa.

  19. What a nice tour you gave us today, William!

  20. Interesting to see Canadian art. Not sure we have many or any examples of it here. Liked the sculpture in your second picture.

  21. So beauty and creativity here! Wonderful~ Love Emily Carr's work and her history in BC ~

    Happy Weekend on its way to you,
    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  22. @Marleen: it is indeed.

    @Sandi: Morrice was quite an artist. The Gallery had a showing of his works until recently.

    @Gunn: Thomson's style feels like it would mesh with Monet, but also Morrice. I've been busy photographing tulips already, and much more of that to come!

    @RedPat: I enjoy coming here.

    @Fun60: I know some of the Group of Seven's works have exhibited internationally.

    @Carol: Emily Carr really evokes her love of the subject.

  23. Another fantastic place. One could wander for hours.

  24. Rick has spoken highly of this museum in his travels to Ottawa and I can see why. I really love the Morrice piece.

  25. This looks like a wonderful gallery. I love the canoe.

  26. I've seen some of Emily Carr's work in Victoria, and a bit of the Group of Seven's but I'd like to see more. The National Gallery looks wonderful.

  27. I really enjoyed the tour. Those nature smalls are great.
    Wishing you a nice day.

  28. Interesting gallery with a lot of impressive pieces, the canoe is one of my favorites.

  29. Hey! Hawaii reveres Voyagers! [and voyageurs]

  30. So lovely to see your collection of photographs here.
    I particularly like the art by James Wilson Morrice.

    All the best Jan

  31. I like the name Old World. Lovely painting of Notre-Dame.

  32. @Mari: I have done so.

    @Jeanie: I love visiting.

    @Michelle: so do I.

    @Kay: it is indeed.

    @Anonymous: thank you.

    @Jan: it's a wonder.

    @Cloudia: thanks!

    @Jan: I like it too.

    @Norma: definitely.

    @Klara: I do too.