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Country Oasis (60.5 x 46 cm)

The artist admired the Australian Impressionist painters and emulated their techniques, as evidenced in this painting. His love of colour is also evident. He had the privilege of being able to observe at first hand, the works of Canadian landscape artists like Tom Tomson (1877 – 1917), and the Group of Seven, (1920 – 1933), who took advantage of the colourful landscapes around them and captured them on their canvasses.

This refreshing landscape shows a blue roofed homestead, nestled in a green haven, where it is guarded by tall, palm trees.

The bright sun lights the homestead’s blue roof, and the building casts shadows across the ground. Similarly, the small tree in the front casts shadow, and it appears as if the sun is quite low.

As a rule of structure, the artist applied the ‘rule of thirds’ to the painting, and he placed an important compositional element, the homestead, in the top third of the canvas. A sea of ‘stippled’ grass has been painted to fill the other two thirds of the composition. The bright, yellow hue sweeps across the canvas to meet the mid tones of the green trees on the horizon. Here, the colours transition into a hazy, blended, softly toned, early summer sky. Manipulation of brushstrokes and colours in this way, results in a sense of atmospheric perspective, or visual depth.

The blue, and high energy golden colours, complement each other. They stimulate the viewer’s senses and one can almost feel the cool breeze in the homestead’s garden.

Acrylic on Masonite, date unknown, probably mid-career. (Cleaned and framed.)

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