From Charlottetown to Vancouver, Consignor’s National Travels Yield Notable Works by Emily Carr, Mary Pratt & Alex Colville to be offered on November 23rd
(Toronto – November 1, 2017) – Behind many masterpieces, there is a sketch that formulates the artist’s ideas and vision. Consignor Canadian Fine Art announces its fall semi-annual auction highlights that will include a rare pencil sketch by Lawren Harris, the preparatory work for of one of his most renowned canvases, Lake Superior, which currently hangs in the Thomson collection in the Art Gallery of Ontario. The sketch, once owned by his wife Bess Harris, carries an auction estimate valued at $20,000 – $30,000; however, its rarity and significance as the precursor to a major canvas could challenge the record for a pencil sketch by the Group of Seven artist. It debuts on the auction block at Consignor’s live auction event taking place Thursday, November 23, 2017at the Gardiner Museum in Toronto.
“The significance of pencil sketching to Lawren Harris is well known,” says Rob Cowley, President of Consignor. “His pad of paper and pencil were just as important as the oils and brushes he carried on sketching trips. We’re thrilled to have acquired this important piece of narrative in Harris’s creative process, particularly a sketch that is connected to one of his most renowned works. It is a stunning work and we expect lively bidding when it reaches the block on the 23rd.”
Fellow artist and close friend of Harris, Yvonne McKague Housser quoted the below about the artist’s process in graphite: “His drawings are a key which open the door to what he was thinking and painting… The drawings were important as an introduction, to clarify his mind before he started a painting.”
This past summer, Consignor set out on a 10-city Art Roadshow travelling from the Maritimes to Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Winnipeg, Regina and Vancouver, inviting the public to consult with their specialists regarding works of art for valuation. It was during the tour that Consignor discovered some of its most unique offerings and exceptional works including the Lake Superior sketch. Other highlights from the tour, which will be offered at Consignor’s Fall Auction of Important Canadian Art include:
- Emily Carr, European Street Scene, watercolour painted in 1911 during her artistic training in France (auction estimate $150,000 – $175,000), discovered in Calgary, AB
- A.J. Casson, Bridge Over Humber River, one of the first outdoor sketches by the artist (auction estimate $20,000 – $30,000), discovered in British Columbia
- Mary Pratt, Baking Bread, celebrated East Coast painter ($30,000 – $40,000); and Alex Colville, Recording Line Zero, Near Nijmegen, a rare war-period watercolour (auction estimate $30,000 – $40,000), both discovered in Saint John, NB
Featured on the cover of the Consignor fall auction catalogue is a 1958 canvas by Michael Snow titled Off Minor, being offered for the first time at auction with an estimated value of $40,000 – $60,000. The abstract painting, which measures 60” X 36”, was privately owned by Joseph Gladstone, the brother of Toronto artist Gerald Gladstone, and has not been seen at auction until now.
Live previews are ongoing at the Consignor Canadian Fine Art Gallery located at 326 Dundas Street W. and viewable at consignor.ca. Consignor’s Fall Live Auction of Important Canadian Art event will take place on Thursday, November 23, 7:00pm at the Gardiner Museum located at 111 Queen’s Park, Toronto, ON.