Artwork by Clarence Alphonse Gagnon,  Ferme au dégel (Charlevoix)

Clarence Gagnon
Ferme au dégel (Charlevoix)

oil on board
signed, titled, dated 1923 and certified by Lucile Rodier Gagnon (no. 265) on a label on the reverse
4.5 x 7 ins ( 11.4 x 17.8 cms )

Sold for $23,600.00
Sale date: May 29th 2018

Private Collection, Calgary
Hélène Sicotte and Michèle Grandbois, Clarence Gagnon, 1881-1942: Dreaming the Landscape, Musée national des beaux-arts du Quebec, Quebec City, 2006, page 136
Following the First World War, Gagnon moved to Baie St. Paul with his second wife, Lucile Rodier, in 1919. Marking a short but prolific period for the artist, the rural region offered the artist infinite seasonal landscapes to capture. From 1919 to 1924, before moving to France, Gagnon took advantage of the newly accessible area, thanks in part to the newly constructed rail line connecting Montreal and Quebec City to Baie St. Paul, and produced numerous sketches, paintings and print works of the area. During this time, A.Y. Jackson, Albert Henry Robinson, Edwin Holgate, Mabel May and Lilias Torrance joined him at various times to join in sketching trips across the region. Gagnon experimented with a variety of paints and techniques while in the Charlevoix region, as he was dissatisfied with the quality of materials after the war and often hand-ground custom pigments. “Ferme au dégel” (1923) exemplifies this experimentation of technique with the ethereal smoothness of the palette, the melting of the snow on a bright sunny day rendered beautifully in soft tones.

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Clarence Alphonse Gagnon
(1881 - 1942) RCA

Clarence Gagnon received his artistic training at the Art Association of Montreal under William Brymner from 1897-1900. In 1903, the generosity of art patron James Morgan allowed him to go to Paris and study in the studio of painter Jean-Paul Laurens. Gagnon distinguished himself early in his career by the quality of his engravings and won a gold medal at the St. Louis Exhibition in 1904 and an honourable mention the following year at the Salon des Artistes Francais in Paris. Returning to Canada in 1909, he divided his time between Montreal and Baie-St-Paul. He became a member of the Royal Society of Canada and later he was elected associate of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. He felt compelled to return to France in 1917 and, while in Paris, continued to paint canvases based on his earlier sketches of Quebec villages. He returned to Canada to marry two years later, remaining until 1924. During this period, he sketched with A.Y. Jackson and Edwin Holgate at Baie Ste Paul. He received the Trevor Prize of the Salmagundi Club of New York. He illustrated “Le Grand Silence Blanc” (1929) and the deluxe edition of Louis Hemon's “Maria Chapdelaine” (1933). Upon his return from a second stay in France from 1922-36, the University de Montreal awarded him an honorary doctorate.