Manly Edward MacDonald
1889 - 1971
ARCA OIP OSA RCA
Manly MacDonald was born in Point Anne, Ontario to a family of Scottish immigrants. From a young age MacDonald showed a great talent for drawing, and he later attended the Albright Art School in Buffalo, New York and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School in Massachusetts. He returned to Canada and enrolled at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto, studying under J.W. Beatty from 1914 to 1916. The year 1918 was an important one for MacDonald - he received a Royal Canadian Traveling Scholarship and was commissioned by the Canadian War Memorials to paint scenes of women working in the fields gathering food for the nation. He was elected a member of the Ontario Society of Artists and became an Associated Member of the Royal Canadian Academy. He also married, and went with his wife to Europe on the traveling scholarship.
On his return to Canada, he established a studio in Toronto, but often went to the Bay of Quinte near Belleville to paint en plein air. He became known for his depictions of the southern and more settled part of the province along Lake Ontario, with its peaceful villages and rural landscapes. MacDonald had a well-honed appreciation for the unique charm of this area, painting subjects such as sugar bush cabins, mills and farms.
MacDonald’s work is in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Canadian War Museum and the Royal Collection of Queen Elizabeth II.