Monday, March 22, 2021


 A large photograph is placed here in the Ottawa Art Gallery. This is a view of the Firestone home in Ottawa, now long gone, but home to the Firestones, a couple with a love of Canadian art, particularly the Group of Seven. Their collection is the heart of the OAG collection. donated to the Ontario Heritage Foundation and transferred to the OAG for custody and display. 

You might have noticed the staircase in the photograph. It was taken from the house prior to demolishing, and is now here, a work of art in its own right, leading down to the next floor.

2020 marked the centennial of the Group of Seven first exhibiting together. This group of artists was inspired by the Canadian landscape and it influenced their work for years. They formally exhibited as a group for several years, the membership changing here and there, but always seven. The Firestones made a point of collecting works from the Group. The OAG put together a retrospective of the Group and their contemporaries for the centennial, and with a couple of lockdowns because of Covid, had extended the retrospective.

This is Mount Thule, Bylot Island, by Lawren Harris.

For today I'll close out with a set of small paintings by AJ Casson, another member of the Group, ranging from across decades of his life as an artist.


  1. The Group of Seven reminds me of the California Plein Air painters. There are some wonderful paintting in the small thumbnails. This is a great show.
    I miss and really loved living In Laguna Beach.

  2. My fav bookstore has stairs like that. Being afraid of heights this always is hell. They do have a lift. With glass walls!!!

    Love the idea of grouping, not competing, but sharing, like the French back then.
    Was the same when I studied - after talking to the prof we threw our works together and helped each other...

  3. Interesting, I didn't know all that !

  4. Hello,
    The art work is lovely. It is cool they could move the staircase from the Firestone's home. Mount Thule is a favorite. Take care, enjoy your day! Have a great new week!

  5. I have visited the McMichael Gallery in Kleinburg on several occasions and the works of the Group of Seven stir my Canadian soul more each rime.

  6., a lucky number they say.

  7. I too love the single painting, and that staircase is wonderful. :-)

  8. I hadn't realized that the Group of Seven changed membership on occasion.

  9. @parsnip: they are a part of the soul of my country.

    @Iris: I have no issue with heights.

    @Gattina: and now you do.

    @Eileen: thank you.

    @David: I have visited that gallery.

    @Tom: definitely.

    @Marie: me too.

    @DJan: I agree.

    @Anvilcloud: some members had brief tenures.

  10. That must be a wonderful show to see!

  11. That's an interesting group and the art is very nice.

  12. Lovely art by Al Carson ~ fascinating group of seven ~

    Living moment by moment,

    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  13. I didn't realize the Group of Seven is so contemporary. They are active painters today!

  14. I love those shots of the stairs. Very artistic.

  15. I like Mount Thule, Bylot Island, by Lawren Harris. It's a beauty!

  16. Neat idea to incorporate the staircase.

  17. Interesting to learn about the Group of Seven and also the avid collectors the Firestones. I’m glad at least the staircase was saved from their home, which must have been amazing. The paintings you showed are wonderful; I really like the small ones in those groups. You really see each beautifulL piece of the grand natural beauty !

  18. Lovely paintings in the last 2 photos.

  19. I can appreciate group of seven stuff all day.

  20. I am impressed with the staircase AND the artwork.

  21. @RedPat: I enjoyed it.

    @Jan: they were great artists.

    @Carol: and more to come.

    @Barbara: they could be forward thinking in their styles.

    @Sharon: thank you!

    @Bill: it certainly is.

    @Revrunner: I think so.

    @Sallie: apparently the Firestones were believers that great art should be exhibited publically. They would open up their home for visitors regularly, so it's no surprise that their collection is accessible to the public here.

    @Marleen: that they are.

    @Red: me too.

    @Michelle: indeed.

  22. Loved the staircase and beautiful paintings.

  23. I do like the set of small paintings by AJ Casson

    All the best Jan

    PS I also like your new header banner, gorgeous tulips.

  24. That is one funky room!

    Love the Springtime header photo too.

  25. Thank you so much I enjoy learning and appreciate these lovely photos and details almost like being there!

  26. I love the Group of Seven so thank you, Firestones. I am going to love this series of posts.

  27. @Magiceye: thank you.

    @Jan: thanks!

    @Gemel: indeed.

    @Karen: you're welcome.

    @Jeanie: they're great artists.