The Making of Canadian Modernism
April 23 to May 12, 2022

Gallery Gevik is pleased to present The Making of Canadian Modernism, an exclusive exhibition of paintings and drawings that traces how Lionel LeMoine Fitzgerald (1890-1956), Bertram Brooker (1888-1955), Kathleen Munn (1887-1974), and Lowrie Warrener (1900-1983) strove to shake the post impressionism of the Group of Seven in the first half of the twentieth century. Following a year of planning, we've gathered an outstanding selection of rare and little seen works from various private collections available to view from April 23 to May 14, 2022.

Lionel LeMoine Fitzgerald

sold
Abstracted Landscape, 1950
charcoal on paper, 7.75" × 10.75"
sold
Nude in Woods
oil on board, 10" × 12"
Untitled, 1928
charcoal on paper, 8.75" × 12"

Kathleen Munn

Figurative Abstractionsold
Figurative Abstraction
oil on canvas, 21 3/4" × 16 3/4"
Passion Series (Ascension), 1938
graphite on paper, 19.5" × 15.25"
sold
Bathers, c. 1928-1932
oil on canvas, 15.5" × 18.5"
sold
Studio Nude, 1918
pastel on paper, 11" × 9.5"
Agony in the Garden (Passion Series)
Agony in the Garden (Passion Series), c. 1934
ink wash on paper, 15" × 22"
sold
Study for Deposition (Passion Series), c. 1927-38
graphite collage , 14.5" × 18"
Sculptural Study (Art Students League), c. 1912-27
graphite on notebook paper , 7.5" × 6.5"
Still Life with Vase, Pear, and Bowl
Still Life with Vase, Pear, and Bowl
mixed media on paper, 16 1/2" × 12 1/2"
In Class Nude with Chair
graphite on paper , 13.5" × 8.25"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #6, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Standing Female Nude (Front)
Standing Female Nude (Front)
charcoal on paper, 16 3/4" × 13 3/4"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #9, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Landscape with Pine
Landscape with Pine
graphite on paper, 11" × 15"
Lyrical Pose (Nude)
graphite on paper, 15.5" ×6.5"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #1, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #2, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Pensive Study
graphite on paper, 20" ×15"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #3, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Strongman Backside
graphite on paper, 16.5" x 10.75"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #4, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Posed Nude
graphite on paper, 16.5" × 10.75"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #5, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #7, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"
Working Drawing for Passion Series #8, c.1927-38
graphite on paper, 8" × 10"

Lowrie Warrener

Untitled (Morning Mist)
oil on board, 12" × 14"
sold
All Sorts - Woodpile Abstract Impression, 1978
oil on board, 14" × 12.5"
Untitled (Windswept Abstraction)
oil on board, 10" × 12"
Lumber Camp at Night Skeena River, BC, 1931
oil on board, 9" × 12"
Untitled (Abstraction)
Untitled (Abstraction)
oil on board, 12" × 14"
sold
Totem Poles, c. 1930
oil on canvas, 13.5" × 11.5"
sold
Untitled (Sun Setting)
oil on board, 12.5" × 14"

Bertram Brooker

St. Pierre Interior, 1947
oil on canvas, 30" × 24"
Elm Tree, 1942
watercolour, 23" × 15.5"
The Swing of Time, 1954
oil on canvas, 30" x 24"
Umbrella Tree
Umbrella Tree, 1950
oil on masonite, 30" × 24"
Goderich Farm
watercolour , 14" × 11"
Vertical Progression, 1948
watercolour, 15" × 11"
Double Bass
Double Bass, 1953-1954
oil on canvas, 30" × 24"
Green Bottle
Green Bottle, c.1937
oil on board, 15" × 11½"
Lone Tree
Lone Tree
oil on board, 15" × 11½"
Road-Side Shrine, Quebec
Road-Side Shrine, Quebec, 1946
watercolour on paper, 13½" × 10½"
Prove in Black & Red (Noel)
pen & ink on kromekote paper
Tree Trunk #13
pencil on paper, 10" × 14"
Tree Top No.6
Tree Top No.6, 1931
pencil on paper, 11" × 14"
All the World's a Stage, 1929
pen & ink on paper, 11" × 8"
#13 Study of Trees
#13 Study of Trees, 1933
pencil on paper, 11½" × 8½"


Slideshow

About the Exhibition

Some say the story of Canadian modernism begins in 1927 when Lionel LeMoine Fitzgerald met Bertram Brooker while he was on a business trip to Winnipeg. Brooker, a self-taught artist experimenting in mystical abstraction, appreciated Fitzgerald’s romantic, Cezannesque landscapes and his grounded personal style while Fitzgerald was instantly struck by Brooker’s Cubist experimentations. While both artists obsessed over form and colour, Brooker was by far the bigger risk-taker, keen to stand out in the Toronto art world which was then dominated by the influence of the Group of Seven.

Although Brooker is often cited as Canada's first modernist, having mounted an exhibition of his abstract paintings in 1927, Toronto-born Kathleen Munn had already exhibited her Cubist-influenced paintings at the annual RCA exhibition four years earlier. Munn’s colourful figurative work featured an overlayed Cubist design, a style she inherited from her time spent in New York and study of Cezanne, Brancusi and Archipenko while on a tour of Europe in 1920. Munn was bullheaded and cheeky and her art reflects an insatiable spirit - "Nationalism is going out," she wrote in 1925, "provincialism and insularity are less excusable than ever before. We are becoming world minded."

Following his graduation from OCAD in 1921, Lowrie Warrener traveled to Paris, where his flattened, decorative approach to landscape made important strides. Warrener's masses of pure colour were remarkable - powerfully contoured and whimsical, and reminiscent of Van Gough, the Fauves, and Kandinsky. Upon his return to Canada, Warrener was drawn back under the influence of Arthur Lismer and Lawren Harris but managed to readdress the Canadian landscape with a more intense glow of light and monumental form and body, echoing the bold, musical formations emanating from Brooker’s paintbrush at the time.

By the 1950s, Warrener, Fitzgerald, Brooker and likely Munn had she not been forced to give up painting in the 1940s to care for her ailing sister, were letting their creativity run wild, producing strikingly modernist landscapes and figurative work alongside paintings of pure abstraction. These four pioneers paved the way for generations of post-war artists to come and we're so excited to share this special exhibition with all of you.

Note: sold indicates the piece has been sold.

Daphne OdjigDaphne Odjig, Canadian Indigenous Artist and Icon Dies at 97. Click here for more details.

Odjig is frequently referred to as the "Grandmother of Indigenous Art." She has been the recipient of many awards, honours and recognitions for her works, to name a few: The Order of Canada, the Governor General's Award, and eight Honorary Doctorates. Her works have been shown in the National Gallery of Canada, The McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the Canadian Museum of Civilization and the Art Gallery of Ontario.


She established the first native-run fine art print house in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1971. Known as 'Odjig Indian Prints,' this print house was so successful that it evolved into an Indigenous gallery space in 1974, called the New Warehouse Gallery, run by Odjig and her husband, Chester Beavon. She was also a founding member of the Indian Group of Seven. This artistic group's purpose was to promote Contemporary Indigenous art and artists.

Alex JanvierAlex Janvier's major retrospective, "Alex Janvier: Modern Indigenous Master" is now open at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection in Kleinburg, Ontario until January 21st, 2018. Afterwards, it will travel to the Beaverbrook Art Gallery in Fredericton and the Glenbow Museum in Calgary.

This exhibition was recently on display at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa and the MacKenzie Art Gallery in Regina. Alex Janvier is one of Canada's most acclaimed contemporary artists. His career of sixty-five years has yielded thousands of paintings, and more than twenty-five murals and public commissions. (Photo credit: Kim Griffiths)

Rita Letendre

It is with profound sadness that Gallery Gevik announces the passing of our dear friend Rita Letendre, one of Canada’s most renowned, trailblazing artists. She passed away on November 20, 2021 after a long illness. She was 93 years old.