LOT 033

1928 - 2021

oil on canvas
signed and dated 1962 and on verso signed, titled, dated and inscribed "for Dorothy"
10 1/4 x 12 in, 26 x 30.5 cm

Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000 CAD

Sold for: $23,750

Preview at: Heffel Toronto – 13 Hazelton Ave

Here and Now Gallery, Toronto
Collection of William and Elizabeth Kilbourn, Toronto

Guy Viau, Canadian Art, April/May 1962, review, page 139

After establishing herself in Montreal, Rita Letendre was introduced to the Toronto art scene through her inclusion in a group exhibition of Montreal artists at Dorothy Cameron’s Here and Now Gallery in 1960. Her work must have been well received at that time, since Cameron mounted Letendre’s first Toronto solo exhibition at the gallery two years later. Among the many photographs in the Kilbourn family archives is a colour image of the artist standing beside her husband, the sculptor Kosso Eloul - and holding L’écho towards the camera.

Given that Letendre had lasted only a year at the École des beaux-arts before concluding that what she was being taught there was not leading in the direction she hoped to pursue, her acceptance in the Montreal art establishment by the 1960s was remarkable. The great Quebec art critic Guy Viau, having informed us that Letendre’s passions ranged widely—including Hieronymous Bosch and jazz; Matthias Grünewald and Aztec art; Edvard Munch, Antoni Tàpies, Lucio Fontana and, of course, Paul-Émile Borduas—goes on to write a glowing review of the Letendre exhibition at Here and Now in 1962, praising her work unabashedly as “primal and refined, barbarian and sumptuous…” L’écho does not disappoint in displaying those qualities and more.

Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000 CAD

All prices are in Canadian Dollars

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