Tom Thomson – A Painter Apart


In the summer of 2014 artist Richard Stanley was among a party of wilderness seekers
canoeing and portaging their way north from Canoe Lake in Canada’s Algonquin Park, to their
destination, Tom Thomson Lake. Of his many photographs taken at that time, two became
instrumental many years later, in his idea of creating an image based on the legendary Canadian
painter Tom Thomson. One photograph showed the waterway entry into Canoe Lake, a passage
that must have been taken by Thomson himself many times, the last of which led to his untimely
and mysterious death in Canoe Lake in 1917. This landscape, shown below, became the framework
of the design. The other photo, and guiding light for the project, was taken after a climb to the
summit of a rocky hillside, upon which stands a Commemorative memorial to Tom Thomson and his
work. To show Thomson’s paintings as close to his originals as possible, Stanley selected and
reproduced 11 now familiar works, these are listed on the back of the canvas. By arranging them to
approximate the form of the Canoe Lake entrance, and painting the portrait and background details
with continuity, Stanley’s homage was now complete. By showing Thomson gradually blending into
his own painted landscapes, he was forever becoming as one with the park he loved so much. Now
considered a pathfinder to the iconic Group of Seven which formed several years after his death,
Thomson and his unique artistic vision was acknowledged by one founding member of the Group as
being ‘a painter of considerable influence – a painter apart’.

Dimensions: 40" x 30"
Category: Artwork
Tags: , ,
Artist: Richard Stanley
Media Type: Mixed Media