Here, There, Everywhere
All Canadian artists deal with landscape. It occupies our visual imagination, even if we don't actively incorporate it into our work. We respond to the early images of the Group of Seven that are everywhere in our culture - from calendars to coffee cups. Either we reject the traditional easel paintings, (which function as a surrogate window on our walls), or we build on their tradition, continuing the conversation carried on between Kreighoff, Kurelek, Tom Thompson, Marc Aurele Fortin and their viewers. Margaret Atwood identified the land as a character in Canadian fiction. It is also the substrate of Canadian visual art. It's where we start.
I live in the basin of the Great Lakes, an area of snowy, damp winters and hot, sticky summers. The humidity in the air gives the light a quality that makes for beautiful, opalescent colours. Even the most drab, urban settings have a pearly shimmer to them. The palette is complicated. Nothing is crisp. Blues are greyer than they appear, and greys bluer. Painters have for generations gone to the south of France for the light. No one talks of going to Toronto for the magic of the palette. In fact, it is one of the great treasures of this part of the world. It is luminous.
I have also painted in Italy, France, the West Indies and many places in the U.S. and Canada. I enjoy sitting wherever I am and staring at the world around me, studying it and capturing it in paint.