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2013 $20 Group of Seven: J.E.H. MacDonald, Sumacs - Pure Silver Coin
$20 2013 Fine Silver Coin - Group of Seven - J.E.H. MacDonald
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Our Price: $89.95 ** Tax Exempt **
Year: 2013

RCM# 118525

Stock Status:In Stock

Availability: Usually Ships in 3 to 5 Business Days
Product Code: 623932040106

Description Technical Specs Extended Information
The reverse features an engraved adaptation of J.E.H. Macdonald’s famous work, Sumacs—actually one of four decorative panels representing the four seasons that Macdonald was commissioned to paint for art patron James MacCallum. Characteristic of the graphic, curvaceous figures Macdonald used for the entire series, the flat imagery in Sumacs was common for decorative art in this period. This detail illustrates the robust texture of the original work, which used intense pigmentation to evoke the ruddy autumnal haze of sumacs in the fall.

The Artist: J.E.H. MacDonald

James Edward Hervey Macdonald emigrated from Durham, England to Hamilton, Ontario, in 1887 at the age of 14. The son of a Canadian cabinetmaker and an English mother, Macdonald studied art in both Hamilton and Toronto, and began his artistic career in commercial design at Grip Printing and Publishing in 1895. In 1903 he moved to London to work for the famous Carlton Studio established by Canadian ex-patriots, returning to work at Grip in November 1907.

An exhibition of Macdonald’s paintings at Toronto’s Arts and Letters Club in 1911 drew the attention of Lawren Harris, who became an important mentor to Macdonald and ultimately encouraged him to leave design work to paint full time. Exhibitions in the second decade of the century won Macdonald both positive and negative attention from art lovers and critics in Toronto and Ottawa.

One of Macdonald’s great friends was the painter Tom Thomson and the two artists had an enormous influence on each other, MacDonald encouraging Thomson’s sense of design and Thomson introducing MacDonald to the landscapes of Ontario’s northern regions. Following Thomson’s death under mysterious conditions in 1917, Macdonald suffered a nervous breakdown—and possibly his first significant stroke.

Macdonald began teaching at Toronto’s Ontario College of Art in 1921, becoming Principal by the end of the decade. A great lover of transcendentalist verse and prose, he was known as a quiet, seemingly physically fragile man with romantic sensibilities who could more often than not be found reading when he wasn’t painting or sketching. In addition to being one of Canada’s most well-known painters, Macdonald was a poet and celebrated graphic artist.

Macdonald died at his home in Toronto following a fatal stroke in 1932.

The Painting: Sumacs (1915)
The outbreak of war in August 1914 brought economic uncertainty to the nascent Toronto movement and the following year J.E.H. Macdonald, Tom Thomson and Arthur Lismer were commissioned to paint a number of decorative panels for the Georgian Bay cottage of Toronto ophthalmologist and art patron, Dr. James MacCallum. The paintings, which were installed the following year, depict summer cottage life with panels of the local foliage.
Macdonald’s murals were painted on Beaver Board – a patented Canadian wallboard material used at the time as an alternative to plaster. Beaver board was often used in secondary structures like sheds and cottages because of its relative low cost and hardiness in locations subject to winter freezing and thawing.
As evident in Sumacs MacDonald treated the foliage as flat, linear designs that accentuate the curving lines and intense colouring of the sumachs in autumn. Intended to integrate art and architecture, rather than simply producing a three dimensional painting on an architectural surface, this same flatness characterized much of the decorative art at the time.
Produced By: RCM
Denomination: 20 Dollar

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