LOT 026

1927 - 1977

Grizzly Sliding Down Glacier
mixed media on board
initialed faintly and on verso titled on a label
12 x 8 3/8 in, 30.5 x 21.3 cm

Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000 CAD

Sold for: $28,125

Preview at:

The Isaacs Gallery Ltd., Toronto
Private Collection, Toronto

William Kurelek, Kurelek’s Canada, 1975, page 120, reproduced page 121

William Kurelek included this painting in the British Columbia section of his 1975 book Kurelek’s Canada, which featured scenes from the main regions of the country. He stated that the underlying theme of the book was joy, and in this image, Kurelek captured something unusual: the rapture experienced by a grizzly bear playing in the Rocky Mountains. He wrote:

This painting may look like fantasy, but I have it on good authority from a forest ranger in British Columbia that it did happen. Like most animals, these sometimes fierce and deadly beasts also have their playful side. To the forest ranger the playfulness or humour of the grizzly bear is an indication of its intelligence. He had happened upon a grizzly sliding down a glacier and stayed to watch from a safe distance. When the bear reached bottom, it stood up, looked back to where it had come from, scratched its head, and then purposefully climbed back up the glacier to slide down again.

The power of nature in the Rockies is fully expressed here, in the panoramic mountain view, rugged rock formations and rich colour. Kurelek was renowned for his fine sense of detail, and in the inscribed lines behind the grizzly’s head and upper body, he emphasizes, quite humorously, the speed at which the bear is sliding down the precipitous slope.

This work is in the original frame made by the artist.

Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000 CAD

All prices are in Canadian Dollars

Although great care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information posted, errors and omissions may occur. All bids are subject to our Terms and Conditions of Business. Bidders must ensure they have satisfied themselves with the condition of the Lot prior to bidding. Condition reports are available upon request.