Alexander Young Jackson

The Entrance to Halifax Harbour


Not on display

Alexander Young Jackson 1882–1974
Oil paint on canvas
Support: 648 × 806 mm
frame: 842 × 1002 × 92 mm
Purchased 1924

Catalogue entry

A.Y. Jackson 1882-1974

N03967 Entrance to Halifax Harbour 1919

Inscribed 'A.Y. JACKSON | 19' b.r.
Oil on canvas, 25 1/2 x 31 3/4 (65 x 80.5); a further 1 3/4in (4.5cm) of the painted surface is turned in below
Purchased from the artist at Wembley (Grant-in-Aid 'T' Fund) 1924
Exh: Group of Seven Canadian Artists, Worcester Art Museum, Mass., November 1920 (14); Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, Montreal, November-December 1922 (108); British Empire Exhibition, Palace of Arts, Wembley, April-October 1924 (EE 27); Canadian Section of Fine Arts, Leicester Art Gallery, November-December 1924 (104)
Lit: Albert H. Robson, A.Y. Jackson (Toronto 1938), p.30, repr. p.31 in colour; A.Y. Jackson, 'Reminiscences of Army Life 1914-18' in Canadian Art, XI, No.1, autumn 1953, p.10; A.Y. Jackson, A Painter's Country (Toronto 1958), p.41, repr. facing p.40 in colour; Dennis Reid, The Group of Seven (exh. catalogue), National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, June-September 1970, pp.135-6

A.Y. Jackson was sent to Halifax, Nova Scotia, late in January 1919 as his last assignment for the Canadian War Records, but found on his arrival that the large troopships were at that time being diverted to other ports. Finding little worth recording, he went to Bedford with Arthur Lismer to do some sketching for himself. By 15 March he had heard that the large troopships were back on the Halifax run, and so went to Halifax to do sketches of the Olympic. On 16 April he returned to Montreal for discharge from the army, and then went on to Toronto to finish the paintings for the War Records. It appears that none of the canvases painted in Canada - all of which were probably finished in Toronto - was purchased for the War Records. (Reid, loc. cit.).

In addition to this picture and a large canvas of the Olympic anchored in the middle of the harbour surrounded by tugs (a picture which he destroyed a couple of years afterwards as it had become a nuisance in the studio), he also painted in Halifax 'The Old Gun, Halifax', now in the Art Gallery of Hamilton, Ontario, and 'Herring Cove', privately owned.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.370, reproduced p.370

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