Some Early Men Artists in Saskatchewan

Since it is not my purpose here to reiterate biographies that can be found elsewhere, I am redirecting you to websites for most of the more well-known men artists of the early period. You will notice that there are a lot more official biographies of the men artists than the women described in my women artists biographies. However, I have linked newspaper articles to almost everyone listed here in order to expand the data that has been accumulated on both well-known and obscure artists. These biographies only include people who were mentioned in the newspapers prior to 1950 and will be useful for looking at the exhibition lists I have posted on this blog.  I have tried to place the artists in chronological order, rather than alphabetical.  Also, since I have not looked at Marketa Newman’s Biographical Dictionary of Saskatchewan Men Artists, I may be repeating information already found there. (book is not online). Note that some biographies appear in other posts, where appropriate.

John Thomas Richardson (b. 1860, Falmouth, Cornwall, England – d. 1942, Regina, Saskatchewan) received title to land in Saskatchewan at NW part of Section 34 of Township 18, Range 23, Meridian W2 in June of 1904.  He and wife Judith lived on the property in the 1906 Census of the Prairie Provinces but it says their date of entry to Canada was 1905. Judith was about six years younger, born in England. P.O. address was Balgonie but the farm was located at Edenwold. I cannot find them in the 1911, 1916 or 1921 Canadian Censii of the area. However, John Thomas Richardson is listed in the Cornwall Index of Artists online and a biography of him can be found at the Falmouth Art Gallery http://www.falmouthartgallery.com/Collection/Artist/Richardson,_John_Thomas_(1860-1942)#sthash.JBH7jbzA.dpuf

Slideshow of 12 J.T. Richardson paintings at http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings/artists/john-thomas-richardson/paintings/slideshow#/12

John T. Richardson had a solo show and sale of 100 paintings in Regina City Hall from Oct. 2 – Oct. 5, 1905 and another one in 1906 (last item in the City & Country Column). Richardson’s Ocean Scene was displayed in 1910 at RSAALS’ first Conversazione at the Collegiate, Oct. 6, 1910 by its owner, Dr. Pollard.  The first mention of Richardson loaning paintings to the Regina LCW’ s Arts & Letters Committee annual Saskatchewan artists exhibitions is in November,1923.  There are further newspaper mentions of him loaning work in 1924, 1928 and 1930 and he also showed a few times with the WAA.  A painting of his was  exhibited in the 1943 LCW exhibition after he died. He advertised local sales of his paintings in 1923 and 1924.

Regina LCW Arts & Letters Committee sponsored two one man shows of his work, one in Oct. 1923 at the Calder Block, Regina and one in June 1-6, 1937 at Stewart’s Gallery, Regina, showing more than 40 of his paintings.  See Jun 1, Jun 3, Jun 5, 1937 RLP.  In 1923 the LCW purchased The Orchard from the artist for its collection. At that time the artist was in Saskatchewan and he was in Saskatchewan again in 1937 for the later show.  As he was quite aged by then, he probably remained in Saskatchewan for the last 10 years of his life, as mentioned in the Falmouth Art Gallery bio. His sister lived in Edenwold. In 1937, the LCW report described him as a resident of Edenwold, Saskatchewan for the past 30 years. However, it is more likely that he owned property in Saskatchewan for more than 30 years but resided abroad for long expanses of time.

The Orchard hung in the Regina Public Library for many years and in 1953 the LCW Arts & Letters Committee donated the painting to the Norman Mackenzie Art Gallery.

John Hamilton Holtby (b. 1868 Ontario) This man was resident in Regina in 1891, according to the Canadian Census, but he does not appear in Henderson’s Directory of the Northwest Territories in Regina in 1894. He received some attention in the Leader on Apr, 7, 1892 (scroll down the page to the illustration and accompanying editorial)  and on Oct. 13, 1892 (scroll down column to Fine Arts) which may explain why he didn’t remain in Regina. I can find no other information about him.

Josiah Rackstraw (b. 1867 England lived in Saskatoon from 1911-1922) listed in directories as a painter/decorator. Exhibited prize-winning paintings in Saskatoon Fairs during these years, usually copies of Old Master paintings. 1916 Fair is one example.

Alfred Perring Taylor (b. 1872 in Ootacamund, India – d. Vancouver, B.C., 30 Mar 1955) There is a biography of Taylor at SNAC. Taylor exhibited in the LCW art committee’s annual Saskatchewan art exhibitions in the 1920s.  I found a couple of mentions of the disposition of paintings by him. Oct. 11, 1915 Morning Leader  & Apr. 5, 1928 SSP

Albert E. Robillard b.1871- d.1934 (Ontario)- Exhibited and won prizes in the 1915 Regina fair as a resident of Regina but must have been passing through on a work assignment.  Robillard worked for Crown Lands Survey in Ontario for 38 years. He made some historically valuable watercolour paintings of Saskatchewan while he was there. There are examples of his prairie paintings in the Toronto Public Library collection. This is his undated view of the Industrial Training School at Lebret, seen on their website.

Robillard Industrial Training School Lebret 1910

Reverend Charles Maillard – See my Ecclesiastic Art post for biography and links. He exhibited in some LCW annual exhibitions.

Father Henry Metzger – See my Ecclesiastic Art Post for biography and links. He exhibited in some LCW annual exhibitions.

Berthold Von Imhoff -See my Ecclesiastic Art Post for biography and links

Emile Mayeur – See my Ecclesiastic Art Post for biography and links

Inglis Sheldon-Williams  (b. 1870 in England, d. 1940 in England) Biography at SNAC.  His work was shown in the first Regina Artists exhibit in 1914 and he spoke on art to a crowd  at that time. (See RSAALS post) He also completed many commissions while in Regina (see Morning Leader  Feb. 19, 1914; Oct. 29, 1914; Feb. 4, 1915; May 13, 1916; Nov. 22, 1917; Feb. 20, 1926 and his work was exhibited in the early LCW art exhibitions by his sisters and others who owned his paintings, as he did not live in Regina after 1918.

James Henderson (1871 Glasgow, Scotland, – d. Regina, Sask, 1951) Biography at SNAC. Recently the subject of a long awaited academic study published by the Mendel Art Gallery in 2012, there are a number of fascinating essays and a very detailed timeline on James Henderson on the Mendel Gallery website. I can only add newspaper articles here, which provide some more information about his activities in the early years in Regina.

But they and a glance at an online Winnipeg Henderson directory will prove that he did not move to Regina until 1913, a questionable item on the time line there. There was another James Henderson who moved to Regina in 1911, a postal inspector, whose social activities, make the whole issue confusing. In an October 10, 1912 announcement in the Morning Leader (P. 16, under City and Country column), he is described as Mr. James Henderson, late of Regina, sending a scroll to Regina from Winnipeg, which accords with his listing in the Henderson Directory in Winnipeg in 1912 and 1913. He may have lived in Regina prior to then but it is unlikely.

Henderson was involved with the Regina Society for the Advancement of Art, Literature and Science after arriving in Regina. He was on the executive and handled the first group exhibit of contemporary Regina artists held in 1914 (see my RSAALS post). Inglis Sheldon-Williams also arrived in Regina in 1913 and was peripherally involved with that organization, showing his work in the 1914 show.

In 1913 James Henderson painted a portrait of Regina’s Mayor Martin for City Hall. Nov. 1 (scroll down the column) and Nov. 8, 1913 Morning Leader. In a report from October 27 of 1914 (cannot link to page so scroll right to next page from link) he was involved in a patriotic window dressing for a downtown Regina store. On Mar. 9, 1917 Henderson was described as the maker of an illuminated scroll for the city and designer of a handbook for them on Feb. 26, 1915. And on July 19, 1918 he completed a portrait of Speaker of the House Mitchell, when he was still described as a city artist. The text of that article says that he had been living in Regina for 12 years, which is inaccurate. But from the evidence of these articles,  I believe that he may have lived in Regina for at least 5 years before moving to Fort Qu’Appelle permanently. An early history book Pioneers and Prominent People of Saskatchewan is online and the biography of James Henderson in that publication suggests he moved to Fort Qu’Appelle in 1916.  Someone with access to Henderson or other directories for Regina for these years and afterwards could settle the date of his departure for Qu’Appelle, which I believe is still in question. Wrigley’s Saskatchewan Directory of 1921/22 does not have a Henderson living at Fort Qu’Appelle and the version I looked at does not include Regina.

Apart from that matter, I would add that Henderson exhibited quite frequently with the LCW arts committee’s annual exhibits from 1920s on and with the WAA in the 1930s and 1940s. He was always in demand and received good coverage in exhibition reports about these shows. The LCW Committee presented two solo exhibitions of Henderson’s paintings, one in 1924 and one in 1936. Oct. 14; Oct.16; Oct. 20 (See also review beside the editorial) Oct. 21 Leader Post Many of the paintings shown by the LCW in 1924 were sent on to Saskatoon for a showing at the University of Saskatchewan. The Saskatoon Art Club also exhibited Henderson’s paintings.  There are several mentions of Henderson’s paintings being purchased by various groups in the Morning Leader Feb. 22, 1923; Dec. 1, 1930 are two examples.

A sort of final solo exhibition of Henderson’s paintings was shown at the Regina Fair in 1950, alongside a large group of Henry Metzger paintings, both artists being renowned for their Indian portraits. Henderson was awarded an honorary LLD degree from the University of Saskatchewan in 1951 shortly. His death was announced on the front page of the Leader-Post.

Augustus Kenderdine (b. 1870 in England, d. 1947 Regina) Biography at SNAC.  Exhibited in the Regina LCW art committee’s and the WAA’s annual exhibitions in the 1930s and 1940s. He first came to the attention of the LCW in 1924 when he made a visit to Regina to do business with Norman Mackenzie and brought paintings along which were viewed by the LCW committee. From this initial meeting, the LCW decided to buy one of the paintings for their collection. The LCW sponsored a solo showing of Kenderdine’s paintings in 1926 at Regina College.  Mar. 22, Mar 29, April 1, 1926.  The club advertised his show using the name George Kenderdine, indicating their unfamiliarity with him.

Kenderdine was better known in Saskatoon at that point, where he gave private lessons from a studio in the Physics Building on the U of S campus in the 1920s.  His profile was also raised with the help of promotion from the University of Saskatchewan and Norman Mackenzie. Kenderdine’s paintings were often seen in showings at the Saskatoon summer fairs beginning in 1922 and in open studio displays (eg.)Apr. 6, 1931 SSP once a year at the U of S. He became a lecturer in art at the University in 1928 and taught winter courses Oct. 17, 1930 SSP there until the spring of 1936. Through his efforts, the Emma Lake art camp at Murray Point was opened in the summer of 1936 and Kenderdine taught a summer studio course for teachers there until he died in 1947. In 1936 Kenderdine moved to Regina and was named Director of the School of Fine Arts at Regina College, because by that time the College had become a satellite campus of the University of Saskatchewan. The Saskatoon Arts & Crafts Club sponsored a solo exhibition of his paintings at the Bessborough Hotel before he left.

Unlike his contemporary James Henderson, who preferred to live quietly and avoid publicity, Kenderdine was personally known throughout the province because of his teaching and although his artistic reputation took longer to develop than Henderson’s, he was a revered figure in Saskatchewan when he died. See later posts on Emma Lake Art Camp and Art education for more information.  Neither man spent much time expounding on their artistic theories in public but Kenderdine’s can be deduced from a couple of speeches he gave which were recorded in the Saskatoon newspaper. Feb. 12, 1930Feb. 16, 1932

A memorial exhibition of his art was shown in 1948

John David Leman (b. 19 Dec 1879 in Stoke Dameral, Devon,  England, d. Regina, Sk on 31 Dec. 1946), dates from Ancestry tree. Leman’s father was a medical doctor attached to the army and Leman attended military school in Ireland. He also attended the Camberwell School of Arts & Crafts for two years studying with Alfred Bramley and later watercolourist, Joseph Pike.  His obituary says he arrived in Regina in 1912 and was an employee of the Provincial Government for 31 years, retiring in 1944. Leman’s profession was listed as artist in the 1916 Census of the Prairie Provinces so he must have had a position that required him to make art for the legislature.  He is most well known for painting the large oil on canvas mural When the White Man Came in Regina, installed in Saskatchewan’s Legislative Building rotunda in 1933. (Jun 16 & Jun 17 Leader Post.) He also completed a portrait that year of Saskatchewan’s minister of public works and telephones, Hon. J.F. Bryant,  which was donated by Bryant to the Legislative building. Apr. 19, 1933 (See my odd stories post for what happened to this portrait)

Leman exhibited in LCW annual Saskatchewan art exhibitions in Regina from the 1920s on and was a founding member of the Regina Sketch Club. Irene Leman, his daughter, also exhibited her paintings with the LCW. This photo and the  Jan. 2, 1947 RLP obit of Leman come from an Ancestry.com tree.  No mention of him being an artist in the tree.

John D Leman photo from Ancestry tree JD Leman obit 1946

According to CHIN, the Edmonton Art Gallery has a watercolour by him called Docent in the School Program. See website of Fraser/Spafford/Ricci Art & Archival Conservation Inc. for an illustrated article related to their restoration of Leman’s famous work at the Saskatchewan Legislative building. http://fsrconservation.com/john-leman-when-the-white-man-came-1933/

Richard Lindemere (b.1880 in London, England, d. in Ladysmith, BC on 3 Jun 1956) There is quite a good biography of Lindemere at SNAC so I am only adding some details to what is already available.  Lindemere’s wife was also an artist. Gladys Lindemere (nee Breffit, b. 1887 in England, d. 1985, Richmond B.C.) exhibited with her husband several times in LCW Regina art shows in the 1920s and 1930s. Gladys painted in watercolour and moved to British Columbia in 1932, separating from her husband. Richard Lindemere, who painted primarily in oil, exhibited his work in Saskatoon at least once to the Saskatoon Art Club in 1927 and in Prince Albert.  It is entirely possible that he was an early member of the North Battleford Art Club before leaving the province for B.C. in 1945. Examples of Richard Lindemere’s paintings can be found on the Legislative Art Collection of Saskatchewan website.

Charles S.R. Ferguson or Fergusson – Scottish-born artist who lived in Regina for a short time.  A graduate of the Glasgow School of Art, Ferguson directed the art classes at Regina College beginning in April 1919. He and his daughter Charlotte Ferguson exhibited their paintings at the first LCW Art Exhibit in 1920 but appear to have not submitted again, so they likely moved on to another community.  He had already been living in Canada for a number of years before arriving in Regina. I cannot find him in any online database or website.

Joseph Henry Lee-Grayson (J.H.) (b. 10 Dec. 1875, Harrogate, Yorkshire England – d. Summerland, B.C., 15 Dec. 1953) Biography at SNAC but I can add to it substantially.  Born in Harrogate to Benjamin Grayson and his wife Lee, J.H.  lived in India as a child and while serving in the British Horse Guards. He later decided to study art in London at the South Kensington Art School, Paris at the Academie Julien and in Belgium at the Ecole des Beaux Arts before coming to Canada about 1906. He stayed in Montreal for two years and then came out west to farm.  He married English-born Kathleen Mercy McNeill of Moosomin, Saskatchewan in 1910 and they lived in Regina from then on. He appears to have been employed with The Craftsmen Ltd. in Regina as a designer prior to enlisting in World War I. This firm worked on designs for the interior furnishings of the Legislative Buildings of Saskatchewan. On Dec. 6 of 1912 the artist delivered a lecture on the Mystery of Colour to an RSAALS audience when he was described as representing the Craftsmen Ltd. Lee-Grayson probably contributed design drawings to the first Regina Artist’s Exhibition in 1914 sponsored by RSAALS. None of the contributors were named in the newspaper but there was an entire room devoted to local architectural designs at that show.

On July 26, 1915 he enlisted with the Canadian Expeditionary Force, giving a false birth year of 1878, as many older men did. He was 6’2” and had a tattoo of an artist’s palette on his arm. He was a warrant officer in the 16th Light Horse C Squadron and lost sight in one eye after being wounded at the Battle of the Somme in France. Lee-Grayson went back to Regina to recuperate and eventually returned to his designing career after the war, quite an accomplishment given that he had what was a devastating disability for an artist. He was employed by the Saskatchewan government as Art Director for the Legislative Building in 1923 and worked there until 1943. Simultaneously, he was employed by Regina College in October, 1923 to “re-open” their art department, probably giving art lessons in the evening or on weekends in drawing, watercolour and oil painting. He may have taught there for several years but I have not found a newspaper mention of this beyond the fall of 1925.

He was a well-known artist in Regina, participating in group exhibitions from the early 1920s until he retired to Summerland, B.C. in 1943. (His name is mentioned in the newspaper for 10 of those shows) He was a founding member of the Regina Sketch Club and the Regina branch Federation of Canadian Artists. He was given a solo show at Regina College in 1926, sponsored by the Regina LCW Arts & Letters Committee. The Committee purchased a painting which was eventually donated to the Norman Mackenzie Art Gallery in 1953. An example of his landscape painting can be seen on the Norman Mackenzie Gallery website. Although primarily known for his landscape paintings, he painted a portrait of King George V which hung in the Legislative Building.  He also designed the terracotta Egyptian decorations on the Albert Memorial Bridge in Regina (1930) and worked on many art projects at the Legislature. 

Lee-Grayson was an expert at heraldry and completed countless illuminated designs. In the Legislative Assembly Collection you can also see an illuminated address he made for the visit to Regina of the King and Queen in 1939, although the small size of the image doesn’t do it any justice. I purchased this sun-faded & ill-framed 1948 illuminated address at an antique shop in Saskatoon in the late 1990s. The subject matter appealed to me. Probably done in B.C. and sent back to Regina, where it hung on this lady’s wall until she died, it is not the best representation of Lee-Grayson’s illuminated work (he was 73 years old and blind in one eye when he did this), but the only example I can provide.

Lee Grayson illumination 1

 

He also illustrated covers for the Dome magazine, a bi-monthly publication of Saskatchewan government employees which was first issued in 1927.  I found this image of his design work on the SGEU website.???????????????????????????????

A learned man and raconteur (eg. Feb. 23, 1926), he wrote several articles for the above publication, and I believe wrote some anonymous art reviews for the newspaper using a signature saying he borrowed from Confucius: “Those who see beauty possess it.” (For example Oct. 20, 1936 review of Henderson exhibit) He certainly commented upon art and was quoted by the press at various times.

He continued to exhibit his art while in B.C.  Group show Artists of the Okanagan Valley, Sep 24-Oct. 6, 1946 Little Centre, Victoria, B.C. (VAG artist files)

Kathleen Lee-Grayson also contributed to the art community in Regina, assisting in art-related clubs and activities and occasionally entered her own paintings in exhibitions. The couple had no children. After J.H. died in Summerland, Kathleen went to Dover, Kent, England where she died in 1956.

Biographic mentions for J.H. Lee-Grayson can be found at www.Heraldicscienceheraldique.com and in Colin McDonald’s Dictionary of Canadian Artists. See also the following articles which indicate the level of esteem he was held in by the community of Regina.  Someone needs to track his work down in Regina and do a show on his achievements.

Lee-Grayson to retire from government office, Nov. 24, 1943 Regina Leader-Post

Official Emblem Adopted by City, Sept. 8, 1948, Regina Leader-Post

Soldier Artist Dies in B.C., Dec. 15, 1953, Regina Leader-Post

A Very Remarkable Person, Dec. 18, 1953 editorial RLP

Liz Roley,”Prairie Painter enlivened church discussion group in the 30s” Nov 10, 1979, Regina Leader Post

Edward McCheane (b. 1883, England – d. 12 Jun 1946 in Saskatoon, Sk.) I was able to find one newspaper article which gave a lot of detail about Ed McCheane’s training and career but I also consulted an online biography written by a family member for a genealogical project. http://niebuhrgathering.com/family-projects-newblogmenu-110/71-family-history-projects-13-edward-mccheane  From this source I discovered that there may be more documentary material on Edward McCheane at the Saskatchewan Archives Board.

Francis Henry Portnall (b. 1886 Isle of Wight, Surrey, England – d. 1976 Regina, Sk.) His career as a Regina architect is well-documented. See the online Biographical Dictionary of Canadian Architects, for example. However, he was actively involved in the Regina art community as a planner and painter, too. A founding and last member of the Regina Sketch Club, he was its perennial president. He also exhibited with the LCW ALC and the WAA in Regina and in Saskatoon with the SAA. See their exhibition lists and also my post on Saskatchewan and the Two World Wars  and my post on the Regina Sketch Club for more information.

Fred Pye (b. 1 Dec 1882 in Hebden, Wadsworth, Yorkshire – d. 29 Sep 1964). Came to Estevan, Saskatchewan with his parents, Henry and Emma Pye, and siblings in 1904. (1906 Census of Prairie Provinces). He left the prairies early on. He gave his occupation as cartoonist when he crossed the border from Victoria, B.C. into the U.S. in 1913 on his way to New York. He studied art in Paris at the Academies Julian and Colarossi in the early to mid 1920s. The French government purchased a painting from one of his shows, Mer Agiteo, in December of 1926. This painting hung in the Luxembourg Museum but was lost or stolen during World War II.  He returned to Saskatchewan and Alberta periodically to visit family but seems to have lived in New York city, Cincinatti, Ohio and Des Moines, Iowa, where he exhibited and taught painting. See brief biography & samples of his paintings at Lowery Antiques website.  He kept up a correspondence with the Regina LCW Arts Committee and in 1928 this group showed 30  watercolour paintings he sent from Edmonton alongside their annual Saskatchewan art exhibit in November.

David Harold Payne  ( b. 15 Jan 1890 in London, England – d. 25 Dec 1950 in Vancouver, B.C.) Short biography at SNAC but I can add to it.

Born the son of Thomas and Annie Jackson Payne, David Payne attended the Royal College of Art in South Kensington, London and studied under Sir Alfred East, earning a bronze medal while he was there. David Payne arrived in Halifax, Canada in April of 1913. His profession was listed as decorator. He made his way to British Columbia and later settled in Regina. He enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force on 23 Jul 1915 at Regina. Gassed at Courcelette, France in 1916 during World War I, he eventually returned to Saskatchewan (1919) on the recommendation of doctors to assist his poor health.  Prior to leaving England, he married Eliza Kirker (b. 17 July 1888 in Belfast, Ireland – d. 3 Mar 1951 at Trail, B.C.) The Paynes had a son, Harold D. Payne, who was born in 1919, either in Ireland or in Canada.

David Payne was well known in Regina as a landscape painter. He was employed as a mail carrier in Regina for many years until his retirement to British Columbia in 1937. According to an article written on the occasion of his departure from Regina, he was planning on living in Nanaimo and devoting himself to painting. He then lived in Port Alice, according to local directories, where he worked at the paper mill.  He must have spent part of his B.C. residence in Vancouver but there is no record of him or his family in the annual directories of Vancouver after 1945. This is his obituary from the Vancouver Sun.

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He was a frequent exhibitor in Regina art shows of the 1930s, both the WAA and LCW Arts & Letters Committee annual Saskatchewan artists exhibitions.  The first reference to him exhibiting with them is in 1920.  Exhibiting his paintings in Vancouver in 1924 and 1925 got him some press. The LCW sponsored a one man show of his work in Regina the week of May 28, 1925 at Regina College and Payne received much acclaim.  He also exhibited his work in Women’s Art Association annual exhibitions and was a founding member of the the Regina Junior Art League and the Regina FCA. Norman Mackenzie collected his work.

Payne is said to have exhibited his work internationally although the exhibition record has not been confirmed. He apparently had a showing of three of his paintings in Vancouver in 1924, sponsored by the B.C. Society of Fine Arts and according to the Vancouver Art Gallery’s artist files, he also had a solo show at the VAG  Nov. 4-Nov. 23, 1947. He gave a report on Vancouver’s art scene to a Regina Leader-Post reporter in 1945.

Emile Walters (b. 1893 in Winnipeg and died in Poughkeepsie, New York, USA in 1977).  Lived in North Dakota as a child and in Saskatoon for a few years (possibly only in summer times with relatives while he was a student in Chicago) and was well known as a painter in Saskatoon and Regina before leaving Canada to build a career as an artist in the U.S. in the 1920s. He exhibited as a solo visiting artist in Saskatoon (see Dec. 3, 1935, Dec. 4, 1935 & Dec. 6, 1935 SSP.) Paintings in Nutana Collegiate Collection and University of Saskatchewan collection.

Frederick Nicholas Loveroff ( b. 1894 in Russia, d. California, 1960) (Biography at SNAC) Loveroff was considered somewhat of a prodigy in Saskatchewan when he exhibited with his Regina art teacher’s class in 1912. (See link in Mary Magee bio). Although he essentially left the province early on, he did send shows of his work to the Normal School in Regina (eg. Mar. 2, 1921) and exhibited in the LCW arts committee’s annual Saskatchewan show in 1922. One of his paintings was bought for the Nutana Collegiate memorial collection in Saskatoon in the early 1920s. I found an article with a critic’s assessment of his work written by a CP staff writer which made its way into the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix on June 4, 1927.

Gordon Griffiths (b. 1885 South Wales – d. Sutherland (Saskatoon) , 1955  Biography at SNAC http://www.sknac.ca/index.php?page=ArtistDetail&id=149  Griffiths exhibited at Saskatoon fairs from as early as 1914  (scroll to end of article on page)and held solo exhibitions of his work in Saskatoon Oct. 27, 1931 and also exhibited his work with the Saskatoon Art Association.

William M. Holliston (b. 1875, Ontario – d. 1961, Saskatoon) School teacher and principal who often gave talks on elements of art and design to Saskatoon art clubs. He studied design in California and New York. Apr 12, 1941 SP (see ad). He taught in Saskatoon from 1903-1940 and seems to have taken up painting as a hobby in the 1940s after he retired, studying at the Banff School of Fine Arts and exhibiting his watercolours with the Saskatoon Art Association at the Saskatoon Art Centre. Holliston School in Saskatoon is named after him.

James L. Jenkin  (b. England no dates) Described as a former resident of Regina when he first moved to Saskatoon in 1931, James L. Jenkin operated a School of Art out of his home for about 5 years during the height of the Depression.  His credentials, his exhibitions and the activities of the school are outlined in the following Saskatoon Star-Phoenix items. Oct. 23 , 1931 SSP, LP Oct. 28, 1931, Sep 14, 1932 SSP, Sep. 23, 1933; Sep.11, 1933, Sep. 15, 1934; Feb. 14, 1934, Sep. 6, 1934; Jul 6, 1935, Sep. 23, 1936. Throughout this whole time, he worked as an accountant in Saskatoon, which he continued to do after he stopped advertising art classes and exhibiting.  He doesn’t seem to have been involved in exhibiting his own work in local societies. His son James A. Jenkin exhibited his own watercolour paintings in Saskatoon in the 1960s.

Ernest Luthi (b. 1906, Switzerland – d. 1983 Punnichy, Sask.) Bio at SNAC. Luthi exhibited frequently with the Saskatoon Art Association in the 1930s and 40s.

Horace George Parker (b. 1900 Wolverhampston, England – d. 1970 Victoria, B.C.) Arrived in Canada from England in 1930 and moved from Saskatoon to B.C. in 1943.  He was a French polisher by occupation and exhibited paintings with the Saskatoon Art Association, prior to the Art Centre period.

Stanley Brunst (b. 1894 Birmingham, England, d. 1962 Vancouver, B.C. Biography at SNAC http://www.sknac.ca/index.php?page=ArtistDetail&id=252 and at http://www.sharecom.ca/wc/brunst.html   Brunst exhibited at the Saskatoon fair in the early 1930s and with the Saskatoon Art Association in the late 1930s. He received some recognition in the newspaper in 1938 alongside Robert Hurley, as Saskatoon’s newest artists.  The Saskatoon press was still following his progress in Vancouver in 1941

Robert Newton Hurley (1894 London, England- d.Victoria, B.C. 1980) Biography at SNAC and at http://www.sharecom.ca/wc/hurley.html  Hurley exhibited with the Saskatoon Art Association in the late 1930s and throughout the 1940s.  He was an active member of the Saskatoon Art Association and the Saskatoon branch FCA. On Aug. 7 1945 he was interviewed on the subject of Saskatoon art by the Regina Leader Post. He was featured in a report alongside Stan Brunst in 1938 (see Brunst for link) and in another report on a two person show with Hilda Stewart on Aug. 12, 1944. In 1951 his watercolour paintings were chosen to be presented to Queen Elizabeth II on her first visit to Saskatchewan. See also  book by Jean Swanson, Sky Painter: The Story of Robert Newton Hurley  Saskatoon: Western Producer Book Service, 1973.

Joseph.S. Base – ( b. 1890 in England, d. 1942 Prince Albert, Sk.Bio at SNAC www.sknac.ca/index Prince Albert’s J.S. Base exhibited with the Saskatoon Art Association  and P.A. Art Association n the 1930s. He had lived in Saskatoon in 1923-24 and had been an original member of the earlier Saskatoon Art Club. At that time he was an advertising manager for a furniture store.

Horace Watson Wickenden (b. 1901 England d. 1995, Saskatoon. Studied at U of S and Calgary. Taught English and Art in Saskatoon high schools. He was an active member of the Saskatoon Art Association and was likely the author of the uncredited, biweekly Art Centre column which appeared on Saturdays in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix between 1947 and 1949, when he was serving on the executive board of the Saskatoon Art Centre. Occasional exhibition reviews with the initials H.W.W. appeared in the newspaper in the 1940s. Resided in Saskatoon with wife Margaret,( b. 1915- d. 2000) who was also a painter but her exhibition years are from after 1950. There are biographies of the Wickendens at www.sknac.ca/index

Dr. Leslie G. Saunders – (b. London, 1895-d. 1968, Victoria, B.C.)Professor of Biology at U of S from 1925-1961. Associate of the Royal Photographic Society of London. More well-known as a photographer, Saunders also exhibited his watercolour paintings with the Saskatoon Art Association and was very active in the Saskatoon Art Centre until he retired from teaching. Biography at www.sknac.ca/index  He was a member of the Prospectors in 1949 (see clipping at bottom of this post) See also my Photography and Film post for more information and links on this artist’s photographic career.

Herbert Thompson Walker (b. 1898 Lancashire, England – d. 1991, Victoria, B.C.) Arrived in Saskatoon as a child in 1904.  A Saskatoon Post office employee from 1921, He was a private student of Madeline Barnett and exhibited his modelled sculpture with the Saskatoon Art Association 1928 – 1944 and Saskatoon FCA to 1948. He also taught clay modelling for the SAA in the 1940s. Married Ethel Silvester late in life and moved to B.C. in retirement.

Ernest Lindner (b. 1897 Vienna, Austria – d. Saskatoon, 1988)Biography at SNAC and at http://www.sharecom.ca/wc/lindner.html. Ernest Lindner was very professionally ambitious as an artist and attempted to organize Saskatchewan artists numerous times in the 1930s and 1940s.  He showed his work with all of the Saskatchewan exhibiting bodies in that era.  Most of the following articles in the Star-Phoenix focus on his exhibitions or personal activities: May 23, 1933; Oct. 14, 1933; Dec. 18, 1933; Oct. 8, 1935; Sep. 7, 1940; Apr.9, 1941; Apr. 9, 1945; May 28, 1945; Jun 13, 1946; Jan. 4, 1947. There are other articles having to do with his teaching career at Saskatoon Technical Collegiate and his many attempts to form professional associations in Saskatchewan. Because of his integral involvement with so many of them see my posts on Art Education, Early Saskatoon Art Organizations, Saskatoon Art Association and Saskatoon Art Centre and the Federation of Canadian Artist of Saskatchewan and other societies around 1950 where his name is in the forefront. He was also a member of an exhibiting society called the Prospectors, see clipping below at the end of this post. Also scroll down a bit to Illingworth Kerr for a link to a report on the 1945 Lindner/Kerr show initiated by the Regina FCA.

Robert D. Symons –  (b. 1898 England – d. Silton, Sk. 1973)  Biography at SNAC and at http://www.sharecom.ca/wc/symons.html  Symons exhibited in the LCW art committee’s annual shows in the 1930s and with the WAA

John Somers Perry (b. 1897 England – d. 1980 BC) Biography at SNAC    Exhibited in the LCW art committee’s annual shows in the 1930s. and in WAA shows of the same vintage. In 1947 Perry painted a portrait of Thomas Miller which now hangs in the Legislative Assembly.

Fred Steiger (b. 1899 in Trepau, Czechoslovakia – d. 1990 in Toronto, Ontario) There is a good resume of Fred Steiger’s career as a Canadian landscape artist at Artadoo website. However, it deals very little with his early career and the more than 15 years he lived in Saskatoon, where he was known as a character portraitist.  A commercial artist by profession, Steiger began his rise to artistic prominence in Saskatoon by exhibiting his portrait work in downtown locations. Apr. 2, 1934, Oct. 2, 1934 (scroll to left), Oct. 11, 1934. By managing where and how he exhibited his own work (i.e. sending it off to prestigious annual exhibits) he quickly got national attention. In Nellie McClung’s syndicated column July 14, 1938 he became the artist who symbolized Saskatchewan. His accolades were announced in the newspaper and it didn’t hurt that, unlike most Saskatchewan landscape painting, Steiger’s portraits were better suited to being reproduced in the newspaper. See: Apr. 14, 1938, Sep 3, 1938Nov. 17, 1938, Dec. 24, 1938, Sept. 23, 1939, Dec. 16, 1939, Sept. 21, 1940, Oct. 10, 1940, Jan. 14, 1941, Jan. 20, 1941,Apr. 15, 1941, Nov. 15, 1941, Nov 28, 1942 SSP

1937 Steiger self-portrait

Steiger’s last local exhibition of his paintings was in 1942 just before there was a terrible fire in his studio building, a fire which also affected other Saskatoon artists Edith Tyrie, Hilda Stewart, Augustus Kenderdine and most critically photographer Gordon Charmbury who was injured in the fire.  Steiger lost many paintings in this fire and moved to Toronto in 1943 although with family members in Saskatoon, he was still of interest in 1945 when a report on him appeared in the Star-Phoenix. Although Fred Steiger exhibited his paintings in the Saskatoon summer fair art exhibitions in the late 1930s, alongside other professional Saskatoon painters (1938,1939), he did not exhibit with the Saskatoon Art Association and only exhibited once in Regina with the WAA group exhibition in 1939. See a review of his paintings at the 1940 Saskatoon fair in this fair column Jul 25, 1940

Few other artists in Saskatchewan dealt with issues that affected the population in the way that Fred Steiger did and it is fascinating to note that his famous painting Drought was not only reproduced countless times to illustrate the Depression, but also inspired a poem written by a Regina authorWhen the Regina Leader-Post issued its Jubilee special on the history of the province on May 16, 1955, only Steiger’s paintings were used to illustrate an article on the Great Depression. Another of his paintings appeared for a different reason in the same issue on page 14.

Illingworth H. Kerr  (b. 1905 Lumsden, Sask. – d. 1989, Calgary) Biography at SNAC. Kerr exhibited his paintings in the LCW art committee’s annual exhibitions in the late 1920s and early 1930s and with the WAA throughout the 1930s. His studio was visited by Regina art club members in 1934 (Leader Post May 15, 1934, p. 8, cannot link) and he was given a solo exhibition by the LCW art committee in 1940.  Apr. 2, 1940 p.8  Fellow artist Garnet Hazard was moved to write a review of Kerr’s show at that time. Before he died in 1936, Norman Mackenzie took a great interest in Kerr’s career, hoping he would ultimately become a studio instructor for the University of Saskatchewan. (Mackenzie mentions him in letters to W.C. Murray at the U of S and H.O McCurry at the National Gallery). Kerr and Ernest Lindner had a two man show sponsored by the Regina FCA in 1945 (Oct.18, Oct. 19), the first travelling show organized by the Regina group for the Western Art Circuit.   In 1947, the year that the University might have been finally looking for an instructor to replace the late Gus Kenderdine, Kerr was appointed as head of the Art Department at the Provincial Institute of Technology and Art in Calgary, effectively ending his connection with Saskatchewan art. Sep. 13, 1947 Regina Leader Post.

Alfred W. Davey (b. 1907, England – d. 1986, Regina, Sk.) Biography at SNAC exhibited in the LCW art committee’s annual shows in the 1940s and with the WAA.  While in Saskatoon in the early 1930s, he was active with the Saskatoon Sketch Club. Most well known for his line drawings used in all kinds of publications, specifically for the 1955 provincial jubilee.

George Bryck – (b. 1899 Ukraine – d. 1960, Toronto, ON. ) See my Ecclesiastic Art post for biography. George Bryck exhibited his work at the Saskatoon Fair in the late 1930s in the prize competitions but doesn’t seem to have exhibited with the Saskatoon Art Association.

Charles Lemery – (b. 1909 in Saskatoon – d.1946, Portland, Oregon) see my Newspaper Cartoonists/Disney connection post for biography

Erdmann Penner – (b. 1905 in Rosthern, Sk. – d. 1956 in Los Angeles, California) See my Newspaper Cartoonists/Disney connection post for biography

Kenneth Branston (b. Ontario 1906 – d. Sask?) No online biography. Kenneth Branston was a frequent contributor to group art shows in Regina in the 1930s and 1940s (WAA & LCW). By 1916 his family had moved to Saskatchewan and lived at Kindersley.  Branston attended the Ontario College of Art, graduating in 1934 with a certificate in drawing and painting. In 1935 he was listed as an artist in Moose Jaw on the voter’s list. He later moved to Regina where he worked as a draughtsman for the provincial government until 1972.  He was a member of the Regina FCA.

George Campbell Tinning –  (b. 1910 in Saskatoon, Sask. – d. Montreal, 1996) See my Saskatchewan and the World Wars post for bio links.  Tinning exhibited with the LCW & WAA annual shows in the 1930s. Bio at SNAC  In 1948 the Regina Public Library bought two of his paintings while Tinning was in Saskatchewan doing a commission for the CNR. Sep. 25, 1948 Leader Post. See also SSP of same date for better story.

Bartley Pragnell Biography at SNAC. Pragnell first exhibited with the LCW art committee’s annual exhibitions in 1939 and he also exhibited with the WAA in the 1930s. He exhibited in Saskatoon as well and became a member of the Prospectors in 1949. See photo in article at end of this post.

William Garnet Hazard  (b. 1903, Ontario, d. Ontario, 1987) Biography at SNAC. Hazard exhibited with the LCW art committee’s annual exhibitions in the 1930s and early 1940s and with the WAA. The first mention I found of him was in Saskatoon when he came to give a talk at the Saskatoon Art Club in March, 1930.  The newspaper described him as director of art at Regina College. The Regina newspapers never mentioned this, only describing him as art director at Balfour Technical School. He was a great admirer of J.W. Bengough and often gave talks and demonstrations using sketches. Mar.4, 1933; May 18, 1934; Feb. 15, 1939; Oct. 31, 1939,  Leader Post. Hazard had a showing of his paintings and etchings by a former Reginan Leonard Watson at his home in 1940. Oct. 10 & Oct. 11  He went on to travel extensively in the early 1940s and have a successful career in Toronto. I remember staying in a downtown hotel in Toronto many years ago and finding Hazard paintings in the rooms and halls. He apparently wrote a book on his experiences during the Depression but no title was given in any of the chronicles that referred to it and I have not been able to find the book or its title online.

Donald B. Johnston – He exhibited in the LCW art committee’s annual exhibitions from the early  to mid 1930s (when he was a student at Balfour Technical School in Regina) and also with the WAA. He appears to have been a member of the Regina Sketch Club. Unfortunately, beyond what is written about him in exhibition reports, I cannot add anything to his biography.  Presumably, he moved on.

Nikola Bjelajac – b. 1919 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA d. Winnipeg, 2006) received an M.Sc. in Art Education from the University of Wisconsin. Came to the University of Saskatchewan in 1947 as a studio art instructor and stayed for two years, teaching at both Regina College and the campus in Saskatoon. He took a leave of absence in 1949 to return to the U.S. but did not return to Saskatchewan.  He later became an art professor at the University of Manitoba. His colleague at Milwaukee, Eli Bornstein, replaced Bjelajac in Saskatoon in 1950.

These last three artists had substantive careers after 1950 but began exhibiting in the 1940s in Saskatoon.

Mashel Teitelbaum (b. 1921 in Saskatoon, SK. – d. 1985 in Toronto, ON). Biography at SNAC As a young man, Teitelbaum attempted to put Saskatchewan art in the mainstream of Canadian art by opening a gallery in Regina called the RED DOOR. It was an unsuccessful project but the optimistic plans for it are laid out in this feature article in the Saskatoon Star Phoenix on Nov. 30, 1946. See also: From Regionialism to Abstraction: Mashel Teitelbaum and Saskatchewan Art in the 1940s. Mendel Art Gallery catalogue, 1991

Mac Hone and William Perehudoff both began their careers exhibiting with the Saskatoon Art Association, Hone from the 1930s and Perehudoff from the 1940s. This undated clipping reproduced below, probably from Jan. 1949 in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, shows several young artists with some older ones who joined together as a short-lived exhibiting unit called the Prospectors. Their debut exhibit travelled out of the province. Jean Swanson commented on the group in the SSP Feb. 17, 1949

1949 Prospectors exhibit newspaper article

MacGregor Hone (b. 1920 in Prince Albert, Sk. d. 2007 Sask.)  Biography at SNAC. As a highschool student in Saskatoon, Hone won a scholarship to attend the 1937 Emma Lake Art Camp.

William Perehudoff (b. 1919 Langham, SK. – d. 2013 Saskatoon) Biography at SNAC  Apart from mentions in late 1940s Saskatoon art exhibits, Perehudoff appears in a feature on art teaching at Langham in  Jan 17, 1947 SSP

 

 

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