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Milne, David

  • AGOAC0012
  • Person
  • 1882-1953

David Brown Milne (Burgoyne, Ontario 1882 – Bancroft, Ontario 1953) was a painter and etcher; he is widely considered to be among the most outstanding Canadian artists. He worked as a schoolteacher before deciding to study painting in New York where, in 1903, he enrolled in the Art Students’ League. Milne supported himself through commercial artwork but actively and successfully developed his own painting, exhibiting five canvases in the famous Armory Show of 1913. His friends during this period included James (“René”) Clarke, with whom he maintained a correspondence for many years. In 1916, Milne and his wife Patsy (née May Frances Hagerty), whom he had married in 1912, left the city and settled in Boston Corners, New York. In late 1917 Milne joined the Canadian army as a private, and in 1918 was appointed as a war artist to record the locations of battles that had involved Canadian troops. Milne returned to Boston Corners in 1919, where he spent most of his winters until 1928, summering in the Adirondacks. He moved to Ottawa for one year in 1923, when the National Gallery of Canada bought six of his watercolours. In 1928, Milne moved permanently back to Ontario (he separated from his wife in 1933), spending extended periods of time alone in the wilderness regions north of Toronto. Palgrave, a short drive from Toronto, became Milne’s home from 1930 to 1933, and from 1933 to 1939 he lived in a cabin on Six Mile Lake near Georgian Bay. He maintained an interest in the Toronto art scene and developed a small group of patrons including Alice and Vincent Massey, and Douglas Duncan of the Picture Loan Society, who acted as Milne’s agent and dealer for many years. He met his second wife Kathleen Pavey in 1938 and lived with her from 1939; their only child David Jr. was born in 1941. The Milnes lived in Uxbridge from 1940 to 1946. From 1947 Milne lived and worked at Baptiste Lake, with Kathleen and David Jr. joining him periodically. As Milne’s health deteriorated, the family moved to Bancroft to be closer to Baptiste Lake. Milne died at Bancroft in December 1953. His work is represented in numerous public collections, notably the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and the Winnipeg Art Gallery.

Vale, Florence

  • AGOAC0043
  • Person
  • 1909-2003

Florence Vale, Canadian artist, was born on April 18, 1909 in llford, Essex, England and died on July 23, 2003 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Her family immigrated to Toronto two years after her birth, where she grew up with an interest in music. She married artist Albert Franck on June 8, 1929, and together they bought a house on Hazelton Avenue in Toronto which became a centre for artists, writers, musicians, and critics. Florence Vale was the mother of two children, Trudy (who died as an infant) and Anneke.
Florence Vale began to paint with her husband’s paints and brushes in the late 1940’s with no previous artistic training – only what she had learned under the influence of her husband and the artists who visited her home. Her art was influenced by Surrealism, Cubism, Expressionism, and the works of Paul Klee. After her husband’s death in 1973, Florence Vale continued to express her artistic ability with oil paints, collages, and ink, also including her own poetry in some of her works. Many of her works, most prominently after the death of her husband, were erotic, while still viewed by critics as keeping a whimsical, innocent tone. Her art appeared in exhibitions throughout Ontario, with exhibitions also in Quebec and New York, U.S.A. She was associated with the Gadatsy Gallery, Toronto.

Hagan, Frederick, 1918-2003

  • AGOAC00059
  • Person
  • 1918 - 2003

Robert Frederick Hagan, painter, printmaker and educator, was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1918. He was educated at Central Technical School (Toronto) and the Ontario College of Art. From 1941-1946, Hagan was employed as Resident Artist and Master at Pickering College in Newmarket, Ontario. In the spring of 1946, Hagan journeyed to New York for further studies. Later the same year, he began teaching at the Ontario College of Art. In 1955 he became Head of Printmaking, a position which he held until his retirement in 1983. Frederick Hagan has held memberships in the Canadian Society of Graphic Art (of which he was made an Honourary Member in 1965), the Canadian Society of Painter-Etchers and Engravers, the Ontario Society of Artists, and the Print and Drawing Council of Canada. His work is in the collections of numerous Canadian galleries. Frederick Hagan passed away on September 6, 2003 at the age of 85.

Snow, Michael, 1929-

  • AGOAC00562
  • Person
  • 1929 -

Michael James Aleck Snow (1929- ) is a Canadian painter, sculptor, filmmaker, photographer and musician. He was born in Toronto and educated at Upper Canada College and subsequently at the Ontario College of Art (1948-1952). After travels in Europe (1953-54) he worked for Graphic Films in Toronto (1955-56), producing his first independent film, A-Z. His first solo exhibition as a painter was at the Greenwich Gallery in Toronto in 1956. Between 1961 and 1967, mostly while living in New York, Snow produced work in the Pop-art mode based on the silhouette of a young woman, entitled Walking Woman, probably his most widely recognized creation. A series of 11 stainless steel sculptures of the image was created for the Ontario pavilion at Expo 67 and is now in the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario. After moving to New York in 1964, he made films regarded as Minimalist, such as New York Ear and Eye Control (1964) and Wavelength (1966-67). Returning to Toronto in 1972, Snow worked mainly on cinematic and photographic projects including ‘Rameau’s Nephew’ by Diderot (Thanx to Dennis Young) by Wilma Schoen. His work is concerned with the nature of media themselves, with perception and with the interrelation of language, sound and meaning. Snow has been the subject of exhibitions and retrospectives in Toronto, Vancouver and Paris.

Challener, Frederick S., 1869-1959

  • AGOAC00487
  • Person
  • 1869 - 1959

Frederick Sproston Challener, painter, was born in Whetstone, England in 1869 and came to Canada in 1870. He studied at the Ontario School of Art, was first exhibited in 1900 at the Royal Canadian Academy and subsequently worked as a newspaper artist. After a tour of Europe and the Middle East in 1898-99, he began working as a muralist and participated in the decoration of the recently completed Toronto City Hall. At the end of the First World War, Challener worked as a painter for the Canadian War Records Department. He made his career chiefly by creating murals for passenger boats, restaurants, hotels—such as Fort Rouillé in the King Edward Hotel,Toronto—office buildings and theatres, including the Royal Alexandra Theatre in Toronto. He also produced easel paintings, watercolours and drawings in a realistic, romantic style. From 1927-1952 he taught at the Ontario College of Art, during which period he made notes and assembled material on Canadian artists. He died in Toronto in 1959. Challener was a member of numerous arts organizations including the Toronto Art Students’ League, Ontario Society of Artists, Royal Canadian Academy, Society of Mural Decorators of Toronto and the Arts and Letters Club of Toronto (founding member, 1908). His work is in the National Gallery of Canada, the Civic Art Gallery, Winnipeg, the Art Gallery of Ontario and numerous public buildings.

Boyle, John B., 1941-

  • AGOAC00689
  • Person
  • 1941 -

John Bernard Boyle (1941- ) is an artist, activist, curator and writer who has lived and worked in St. Catharines, London, Elsinore, and Peterborough, Ontario. He married Janet Perlman, with whom he has one daughter, Emily. Boyle was educated at London Teachers’ College and the University of Western Ontario, and is self-taught as a painter. He taught elementary school in St. Catharines intermittently between 1962 and 1968. In 1974 he moved with his family to a converted church in Elsinore, Ontario (near Owen Sound), where he had his studio until 2002. He is currently based in Peterborough. Boyle began to exhibit his paintings in 1964, the same year he was inspired by meeting London artists including Jack Chambers and Greg Curnoe. In 1966 controversy arose at the London Public Library and Art Museum over Boyle’s exhibited piece Seated Nude. Boyle was an early participant in London’s 20/20 Gallery. In 1972 he designed sets for the play Buffalo Jump at Theatre Passe Muraille, Toronto; that same year he curated the first Billboard Show in St. Catharines. In 1980 Boyle completed the mural Our Knell for Queen Subway Station, Toronto. From 1973 through the 1990s, Boyle exhibited regularly at Nancy Poole’s Studio, Toronto. A key figure among the artist activists who established professional representation and rights for artists in the early 1970s, Boyle was the founding spokesperson of Canadian Artists Representation Ontario (CARO) in 1971. In 1970 he served as the first president of the Niagara Artists Co-operative (later Company). Boyle was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Art Gallery of Ontario, 1975-1977. Boyle has written extensively in journals including 20 Cents Magazine, Parachute, and Twelve Mile Creek. His regular column “According to Boyle” in CAROT (1975-78) dealt with challenges facing artists. Boyle has written three novels, No Angel Came (1995); and the unpublished The Gergovnians and The Peregrinations and Permutations of a Young Artist in Canada. His illustration and book design work includes The Port Dalhousie Stories by Dennis Tourbin (1987), as well as several magazine articles and book jackets. He initiated the discipline of “Canadology” in 1989 to record the social customs of the country. Boyle is a founding member (since 1965) and principal kazooist of The Nihilist Spasm Band. His work is represented in numerous Canadian collections, including the National Gallery, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Kindlund, Anna Belle Wing, 1876-1922

  • AGOAC04376
  • Person
  • 1876 - 1922

Anna Belle Wing Kindlund (later Mrs. Alois Trnka), 1876-1922, was an artist born in Buffalo, New York. She studied with W. Hitchcock in Buffalo, and G. Bridgman in New York. She was a member of the Buffalo Society of Artists and the New York Society of Craftsmen, and is listed in Who Was Who in American Art as a painter and miniaturist.

Chambers, Jack, 1931-1978

  • AGOAC00336
  • Person
  • 1931 - 1978

Jack (John Richard) Chambers, artist and experimental filmmaker, was born in London, Ontario in 1931. He studied at the Escuela Central de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid from 1957 to 1959. In Spain he met Olga Sanchez Bustos, whom he married in Canada in 1963. They made their home in London and had two children, John (b. 1964) and Diego (b.1965). Chambers’ style of painting and drawing in the 1960s was characterized by a dreamlike quality. Toward the end of that decade, his work became intensely focused on the depiction of reality, often relating closely to source photographs, most of which were taken by the artist himself. Between 1964 and 1970 Chambers also directed eight films. The subjects of his work were often domestic or regional, focusing on his experience in London. In 1967, Chambers founded Canadian Artists’ Representation to try to establish fee scales for reproduction rights and rental fees for works in public exhibitions, and served as president from 1967 to 1975. In 1969 Chambers published his essay “Perceptual Realism”, and that same year, was diagnosed with leukemia. From 1971 to 1977 he worked on “Red and Green,” a study of art and perception (unpublished). Chambers died in London in 1978. His work is in the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario, the National Gallery of Canada, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, and numerous other Canadian galleries.

Loring, Frances, 1887-1968

  • AGOAC00126
  • Person
  • 1887 - 1968

Frances Norma Loring, sculptor, was born in Wardner, Idaho October 14, 1887. She studied sculpture in Geneva, Munich and Paris 1901-1905. In 1905 at the Art Institute of Chicago, she met Florence Wyle with whom she subsequently shared studios in New York (1909-1912) and Toronto (1912-1966). A member in 1920 of the Ontario Society of Artists, she was a founding member (1928) of the Sculptors' Society of Canada and a chief organizer of the Federation of Canadian Artists and the National Arts Council. Among her best-known public monuments are the lion of the Queen Elizabeth Monument in Toronto (originally near the entrance to the Queen Elizabeth Way) and war memorials at St Stephen, New Brunswick and Cambridge (formerly Galt), Ontario. Frances Loring died in Newmarket, Ontario February 3, 1968.

Wyle, Florence, 1881-1968

  • AGOAC00125
  • Person
  • 1881 - 1968

Florence Wyle, sculptor, was born in Trenton, Illinois November 24, 1881. While studying at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1905, she met Frances Loring, with whom she later moved to New York. Loring moved to Canada in 1912, where Wyle joined her the following year. They each produced a considerable body of work in their studio, a converted church, in Toronto. A member of the Ontario Society of Artists (1920), Wyle was the first woman sculptor to become a full member of the Royal Canadian Academy. She was also a published writer (Poems, 1958). Among her public sculptures is the relief of Edith Cavell on the grounds of the Toronto General Hospital. Florence Wyle died in Newmarket, Ontario January 13, 1968. Loring & Wyle’s works are in the collections of the Art Gallery of Ontario, the National Gallery of Canada and the Canadian War Museum and in several public and private buildings in Ontario.

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