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  • Clarington Outdoor Festival 2019: Call for Submissions

    Location: Bowmanville, ON

    Call all artists! The Clarington Outdoor Art Festival (COAF) 2019 is celebrating the..
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  • Beacon Original Art Call for Artists

    Location: Calgary, AB

    Beacon Original Art invites emerging, mid-career and professional artists to participate in our..
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  • 2020 Ducks Unlimited National Portfolio

    Location: Bracebridge, ON

    DUCKS UNLIMITED CANADA – NATIONAL ART PORTFOLIO CALL FOR ENTRIES – DEADLINE JULY 31,..
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  • 2019 ANIMA MUNDI - CONSCIOUSNESS

    Location: VENICE,

    ITSLIQUID Group, in collaboration with Venice Events and Ca’ Zanardi, is pleased to..
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  • Walker Industries Juried Art Exhibition

    Location: Niagara on the lake, ON

    Daisy Fresh has been selected as one of 26 finalists in this juried..
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  • The Second Latin American Contemporary Fine Art Competition

    Location: New York, NY

    The Second Latin American Contemporary Fine Art Competition - May 21st to June..
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  • Lines, Shapes & Objects Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the Lines, Shapes & Objects art competition. For this..
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  • HEDI KYLE: THE ART OF THE FOLD

    Location: Halifax, NS

    The NSCAD School of Extended Studies & Letterpress Gang are hosting a..
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  • Toronto Outdoor Art Fair - Call for Artists

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Attend the Toronto Outdoor Art Fair Attend the 58th Toronto Outdoor Art Fair, Canada’s..
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  • Surfaces Exploration and Experience Karen Colville Artist

    Location: New West Minster, BC

    In the Plaskett Gallery @ Massey Theatre Surfaces…Exploration & Experience Artist Karen Colville June 25th..
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  • Race, Ethnicity and belonging

    Location: CALGARY, AB

    The Alberta Society of Artists invites all artists (over 18) residing in Alberta..
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  • Art District Gallery Membership

    Location: Kitchener, ON

    Art District Gallery May Membership Drive - Drop in Open House -Tuesday May..
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  • Art in the Garden 2019

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    Taking place at various gardens on Vancouver's North Shore, this will be the..
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  • North Van Arts Deadline Extended! (50th Anniversary Exhibition)

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    North Van Arts has extended our deadline to Sunday May 26 at Midnight..
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  • Manitoba Neuroscience Network Donation Request

    Location: Winnipeg, MB

    Seeking art pieces for the silent art auction that will take place as..
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  • “White” International Call - Art & Literature Journal - Deadline June 30, 2019

    Location: Toronto, ON

    | Theme: White cats, white milk, white snow. Reflecting most wavelengths of visible..
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  • Call for Art | 4th Annual Cityscapes Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 4th Annual Cityscapes art competition. For this competition,..
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  • Myseum Intersections 2020: Call for Submissions

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Myseum of Toronto is launching a call for submissions for our fifth annual..
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  • Call For Artists - Art Sale Fundraiser

    Location: Toronto, ON

    ART SALE FUNDRAISER BENEFITING CRISTINA’S TORTINA SHOP HOSTED BY PROGRESSIVE TRAINING COLLEGE OF BUSINESS..
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  • H.A.P. Art Contest by ALPHA Education

    Location: Scarborough, ON

    ALPHA Education is hosting its annual History + Art = Peace Art Contest!..
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  • On the Same Page: Transforming Paper

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    On The Same Page: Transforming Paper showcases artists working with paper as an..
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  • ANIMA MUNDI | VENICE MAY-NOV 2019

    Location: Venice,

    CALL FOR ARTISTS: ANIMA MUNDI | VENICE MAY-NOV 2019 ITSLIQUID International Art Festival ITSLIQUID GROUP,..
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  • 9th Annual

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces an art call for the..
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  • Past (Tense) by David Scott Exhibition

    Location: Calgary, AB

    HUB @ 302 Crossroads Art Centre The Alberta Society of Artists #302 – 1235-26th Avenue SE Calgary,..
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  • Call for Artist/Writer in Residence

    Location: Harrison Hot Springs, BC

    The Kent Harrison Arts Council Artist in Residence Program Visual Artist / Writer in..
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  • Sue J Amon Art Exhibit

    Location: Yarmouth, NS

    There will be an art exhibit of the works of Sue J Amon..
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  • Acrylic Painting Workshop with Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

    Location: Nakusp, BC

    In this 2-day workshop, we will learn from the award-winning acrylic painter Tatjana..
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  • Artists’ Network Gallery Streetcar Art Exhibition

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Submissions: March 8 – May 31, 2019 Exhibition: June 11 – 27, 2019 We are..
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  • Friends of Bon Echo Art and Sale exhibition

    Location: Cloyne , ON

    Call to Artists With its striking views and varied moods, Mazinaw Lake has drawn..
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  • Acrylic Painting Workshop with Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki In this 2-day workshop, we will learn how to quickly develop rich..
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  • Jun 8 – Intro to Stained Glass Workshop

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    In this workshop attendees will learn how to make a simple sun catcher..
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  • Jun 6 – 27 – Introduction to Acrylics

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    This course is intended for anyone who would like to try acrylic paints..
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  • May 29 – Jun 19 – Core Drawing Skills

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    Master the fundamentals of drawing in this introductory course, which will build your..
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  • May 25 & 26 – Cedar Bark Hat Workshop

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    Join master weaver Jessica Silvey and learn the fundamental techniques of the checker..
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  • International Open Call to all Artists: Painting on the Edge

    Location: Vancouver, BC

    International Open Call to all Artists: Painting on the Edge Painting on the..
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  • The Wilds of Venice: Study Contemporary Art + Creative Entrepreneurship at the European Cultural Academy with the Jealous Curator and The Wild Residen

    Location: Venice,

    Education Opportunity for Artists: the 'Wilds of Venice' Certificate Course in 'Creative Entrepreneurship +..
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  • Summer Solstice Art Festival

    Location: Brainerd, MN

    We are having a Summer Solstice Art Festival June 23rd 10-4. We..
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  • Architectonic

    Location: St. Charles, MO

    The Foundry Art Centre is a Community Art Center with Fine Art galleries..
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  • Mid Main Art Fair

    Location: Vancouver, BC

    The 9th annual MID MAIN ART FAIR will be held on Sunday, June..
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  • Game Studio needs Art Illustrators

    Location: Bridgewater, NS

    We are a fully funded video game studio in Nova Scotia that is..
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  • Anima Mundi

    Location: Venice, Italy,

    CALL FOR ARTISTS: ANIMA MUNDI | VENICE MAY-NOV 2019 ITSLIQUID International Art Festival Deadline: April..
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  • Call to Artists - $40,000 in Awards - The Salt Spring National Art Prize

    Location: Salt Spring Island, BC

    The Salt Spring National Art Prize offering $40,000 in awards, one of Canada’s..
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Tom Thomson

By Robert Amos January 20, 2003

} Tom Thomson It¹s in my blood. I grew up in Ontario and went to summer camp, canoe tripping south of Algonquin Park. My family¹s summer cottage is in Muskoka near Georgian Bay. The Canadian Shield is Tom Thomson country. His paintings present the ultimate Canadian myth of man and nature, blue lake and rocky shore. So it was imperative that I make the trip to the Vancouver Art Gallery to see the definitive exhibition of Thomson¹s paintings, part of a tour organized by the National Gallery of Canada (until January 5, 2003, telephone 604-662-4719). Of course I was not disappointed. There are 140 of Thomson's paintings on show, including many of his large works, Canadian icons such as Northern River (1914-15) and the Jack Pine (1916-17) from the National Gallery, and The West Wind (1916-17) from the Art Gallery of Ontario. Most of this extensive show is made up of the small, lushly painted little panels for which Thomson is justly famous. Each panel is about 21 x 26 centimeters - smaller than an ordinary sheet of paper, a size chosen for his convenience in painting on the shore or in the woods. The panels were cut to fit his sketchbox, which is here on display. Photos of and by Thomson in Algonquin Park add context at every turn. Thomson brought to the task a somewhat sophisticated experience gained in commercial art studios in Toronto, where styles like 'arts and crafts' and 'art nouveau' were filtering down to the colonies. In the few short years after he gave up commercial art, he blazed a striking trajectory from tight 'realism' to an immediate and personal shorthand of intense colour and strong, poster-like design. wildflowers, summer 1915, oil on board, 21.6 x 26.8 cm, McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Kleinburg, Ontario Like Van Gogh, Thomson grew and blossomed in a few short years. The paintings we know him for were created between his first visit to Algonquin in 1912 and his death in 1917. Each was cut off by death when in full possession of his genius. Thomson's death by drowning under mysterious circumstances in Canoe Lake set the seal on his personal legend. This show is mercifully devoid of speculation on the matter of his death. I was well prepared for the show by the extensive catalogue (published by Douglas and McIntyre, $65) reproduces all the paintings in colour (though a bit small for my liking). The story of Tom Thomson is presented here with lots of revisionist history and context, an art for citified tourists playing at the return to nature in a spent industrial site. The catalogue contains seven essays, remarkable for their clear thinking and new insights into the story. Also included are transcriptions of all his letters, and maps, photos and a definitive bibliography. Yet even poring over the book with a magnifying glass (as I did) does not replace the experience of seeing the real paintings. In one room of the Vancouver Art Gallery, nine little panels are shown without frames and visible from both sides. They are chosen to address the nature of what Thomson painted on - canvas board, wooden panel. They demonstrate how he used the bare surface of the wood, or prepared that surface with colours like warm grey or burnt sienna as an underpainting - colours which show through and around his vivid brushstrokes, an effect crucial to the effect of these little gems. It is a pleasure to see the back of the works, bearing the annotations by the artist or subsequent owners, and the practical reality of the support on which the artist worked. sketch for The West Wind, spring 1916, oil on wood, 2.14 x 26.8, Art Gallery of Ontario Thomson painted water spilling through a dam as if he was icing a cake. The paint is that thick! Autumn leaves are spackled into place, each bough a chunk of oil paint partially dried and set like a carnelian into a neutral ground. On examination, I came to realize that the dazzle of his colours depends on these neutral tints, be it a dun muddy umber or the faded khaki of a duffle bag. With work borrowed from every major collection in Canada, it is interesting to see how Thomson¹s works are presented. For the most part I find the framing works against the art. These fresh little panels are now treated with reverence, which means heavy gold frames. This is hardly appropriate for something painted in a canoe and dried in tent. The deep recesses of the frames cause the lighting to cast a shadow, sometimes hiding as much as ten percent of the top of the painting. Despite all the art history we've lived through since 1917, Thomson's legacy is still informing artists all over this country. And his myth grows larger day by day. If you need to know, first hand, what this is all about, you must see this show. ___________________________________________ Copyright © 2002 Robert Amos Robert Amos is an artist and art writer who lives in Victoria, B. C.. He can be contacted by e-mail and you can view his paintings at www.robertamos.com