Lawren Stewart Harris

Lawren Stewart Harris

Lawren Stewart Harris

Inventory # A19S-E17252-002

Lawren Stewart Harris
ALC BCSFA CGP FCA G7 OSA RPS TPG 1885 - 1970 Canadian

Lake Superior Sketch LXXXVII
oil on board circa 1922
signed and on verso signed twice, titled on a label and inscribed with the Doris Mills inventory #4/87 and with the artist's symbol and "6" / "H.28"
10 1/4 x 14 in  26 x 35.6cm

Private Collection
Sold sale of Fine Canadian Art, Heffel Fine Art Auction House, November 25, 2004, lot 71
Private Collection, Toronto

Doris Mills, L.S. Harris Inventory, 1936, Group 4, Lake Superior Sketches, catalogue #87, location noted as the Studio Building
Jeremy Adamson, Lawren S. Harris: Urban Scenes and Wilderness Landscapes, 1906 – 1930, Art Gallery of Ontario, 1978, pages 84 and 123

Lawren Harris first saw the eastern tip of Lake Superior in 1918 and said: “I have never seen anything so impressive as the half-revealed extensiveness of the lake...It certainly was superior in all ways. There was a haziness in the air which merged the horizon with the sky, and that smooth glimmering infinity of waters was like a glimpse of God himself.” This glimpse inspired him to return to the north shore of the lake every year from 1921 to 1928, and each time he traveled in the company of other artists – at various times with A.Y. Jackson, Arthur Lismer, Franklin Carmichael and A.J. Casson. Harris wrote about their common experience, “We found that, at times, there were skies over the great Lake Superior which, in their singing expansiveness and sublimity, existed nowhere else in Canada.” Successive ice ages had reduced this area to essential forms, and the landscape had a primeval look and timeless feeling to it that inspired Harris. In this work, Harris emphasizes the strong rock formations, shown as chunks of interlocking shapes intertwined with the rich colours of fall vegetation. Group of Seven members sometimes acknowledged that one of them had a powerful insight into certain areas, and Lake Superior was considered to be “Harris’s country.”

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