Sunday, May 4, 2014

Lauren Harris and A.Y.Jackson at the AGA

my sketches of the sketches...
the original sketches at the Alberta Art Gallery
We took a quick family trip to the Alberta Art Gallery. My main interest was to see some of the paintings of the Rocky Mountains by two of the Group of Seven -- Lawren Harris and A.Y. Jackson.

Most of the work exhibited was smaller in scale, exuding a sketch-like quality  (some were indeed quick sketches); there was much to relate to, and I decided to sketch a couple of graphite drawings and a painting. My notes say that one of these was drawn by Harris, the other by Jackson, but the views and treatment are virtually identical. I am not sure which is correct (likely Harris?), but it was illuminating to "retrace" the intimate and personal marks made by such great artists of close to a century ago, especially of subject matter I too have drawn in the past few years.
a sketch of a Lauren Harris painting

the original Lauren Harris painting
There was also much to appreciate by copying the iconic Lauren Harris painting (one of the largest here and the focal work of the exhibit), including an understanding of his peculiar, developed totemic language, the masterful use of lighting, and detailed composition.

But my favourite would have to be the tiny A.Y. Jackson canvas that seems to capture both the immensity and immediacy of the experience of being in this part of the world, and inspires me to develop further.

a great little gem by AY Jackson

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