LOT 048

1919 - 2020

Sea Drift IV
acrylic on canvas
signed and on verso signed, titled and dated 1989
50 x 45 in, 127 x 114.3 cm

Estimate: $40,000 - $60,000 CAD

Sold for: $49,250

Preview at:

Bau-Xi Gallery, Vancouver
Private Collection, Victoria
Sold sale of Canadian Post-War & Contemporary Art, Heffel Fine Art Auction House, November 22, 2012, lot 49
Private Collection, Vancouver

Ian M. Thom and Andrew Hunter, Gordon Smith: The Act of Painting, Vancouver Art Gallery, 1997, page 50, similar 1989 canvases entitled Sea Drift 13 and Sea Drift 2 reproduced pages 90 and 91

In 1984, 1986 and 1987, Gordon Smith traveled to Haida Gwaii, and his experiences there formed the basis for his Sea Drift series in 1989, based on the seashore. In this series, Smith used free-flowing, expressionist brushwork, creating surfaces in which he layered, scraped, incised and dribbled paint. This approach related back to the 1950s, when Smith connected with the work of American Abstract Expressionists while at the California School of Fine Arts in San Francisco. In Sea Drift IV, Smith uses a rich, dark palette mixed with the white of foaming tidal waters, brightened by splashes of pink, mauve and blue. This period as the decade turned was a time of significant innovation for the artist. Ian Thom wrote, “Smith appeared to have found his ‘true lyric territory.’ Smith was able to take a series of visual cues from the landscape, his viewing of the world, and build an aesthetic which referred to but surpassed the immediate observations of the eye.” Sea Drift IV is a dazzling expression of Smith’s modernist perspective on the West Coast landscape.

Estimate: $40,000 - $60,000 CAD

All prices are in Canadian Dollars

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