NortherRiver

Reflections on a Northern River

Jun 23rd, 2017 Books & Literature, Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 15 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout these days of mystery devoted to the painter’s life, art and legacy. The last of nine instalments, Casting on a Northern River,…

Tom Thomson Statue in Huntsville

Tom As Rock Star

Jun 19th, 2017 Books & Literature, Film & Cinema, Music, Theatre, Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 55 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout these days of mystery devoted to aspects of the painter’s life, art and legacy. The fifth instalment, Tom As Rock Star, takes…

TomThomsonFlyFishing

A River Runs Through Tom

Jun 3rd, 2017 Armchair Fly Angler, Books & Literature, Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 38 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout these days of mystery devoted to the painter’s life, art and legacy. The eighth instalment, A River Runs Tom, is an account…

TomThomsonatScugag

How Tom Thomson Found Me

Jun 2nd, 2017 Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 17 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout these days of mystery devoted to the painter’s life, art and legacy. The seventh instalment, How Tom Thomson Found Me, is a personal account…

TomThomsoninCanoe

Painting Into the Mystic: Searching for Tom

May 22nd, 2017 Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 20 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout these days of mystery devoted to the painter’s life, art and legacy. The sixth instalment, Painting Into the Mystic: Searching for Tom,…

TomThomsonLetter

Epistles from the Grave

May 17th, 2017 Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 16 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout those days of mystery devoted to aspects of the painter’s life, art and legacy. The fourth instalment, Epistles from the Grave, is…

Colours

Colours in the Key of Tom

Apr 29th, 2017 Music, Theatre, Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 7 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day throughout those days of mystery devoted to aspects of the painter’s life, art and legacy. The third instalment in the series is an…

WesleyBates

Carving Towards the Light

Apr 13th, 2017 Books & Literature, Visual Arts Rob Reid 9 min read

Wesley Bates is one of my favourite Canadian artists. I’m fond of wood engravings as an artform and I think Bates is one of our most accomplished engravers. The painter/printmaker/book maker and I also share deep appreciation of a handful of writers including Canadians W.O. Mitchell, Timothy Findley and James Reaney, in addition to American agrarian poet/essayist/fiction writer Wendell Berry. Bates kickstarted his commercial career in…

CanoeSymposium

Call of the Canoe

Apr 3rd, 2017 Armchair Fly Angler, Books & Literature, Visual Arts Rob Reid 6 min read

Those who glance at a map of southwestern Ontario might conclude — erroneously as it turns out — that Waterloo Region neither hears nor heeds the call of the canoe. Situated equidistantly between Lake Huron and Lake Erie, the region appears landlocked. Take a closer look and a different topography emerges, as you follow the historic, heritage Grand River and trace its watershed boasting myriad…

GeorgeMcLean2

When a Bluejay is More Than a Bluejay

Dec 20th, 2016 Books & Literature, Visual Arts Rob Reid 4 min read

Wildlife art — love it or hate it. It’s black or white; there’s no grey on this paintbrush. The battle line is drawn in indelible ink — the high art pundits and connoisseurs on one side; the general public without specialized training on the other side. It’s an art form that’s evaluated and judged through a narrow lens based on how a commentator interprets familiar…

David Blackwood3

Newfoundland Mythmakers in Word and Image

Dec 19th, 2016 Books & Literature, Visual Arts, Welcome Message Rob Reid 16 min read

I’m fascinated by the rich culture of Newfoundland. I love its music, its literature (poetry and prose as well as drama) and its visual arts. I have yet to visit Canada’s easternmost province; however, I yearn to cast fur and feather at homebound Atlantic salmon, revered as the King of Fish, on one of its beautiful rivers. David French’s Salt-water moon, the third book —…

AlexColville

Artist and Train

Dec 14th, 2016 Visual Arts Rob Reid 13 min read

Alex Colville was one of the Canadian artists I most admired. His unique existential realism appealed to me because of the quality of literary narrative that underlies and informs his work. Whether or not the artist intended, I have never been able to spend time with a Colville drawing, painting or print without trying to piece together the story to which he gave expression through…

KenDanbyB

Artist Behind the Mask

Dec 8th, 2016 Visual Arts Rob Reid 41 min read

Over three decades as an arts reporter for the Waterloo Region Record I wrote more about Ken Danby than any other artist, with the possible exception of Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven. I visited him at his renovated Armstrong’s Mill home/studio outside of Guelph multiple times. I also visited his wife Gillian on a couple of occasions after her husband’s premature death —…

China Quarries #8

Edward Burtynsky’s Dark Satanic Mills

Nov 1st, 2016 Visual Arts Rob Reid 8 min read

Where man is not, Nature is barren — William Blake Men dig tons of earth to find an ounce of gold All things change to fire and fire exhausted falls back into things  — Heraclitus When I first came eye-to-eye with Edward Burtynsky’s monumental photographs in 2002 I was reminded of Heraclitus, that wise ancient who remains as urgently relevant today as he did in…

TomThomson

Paddling into the Mystery on Canoe Lake

Jul 3rd, 2016 Books & Literature, Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 7 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I will post a blog each day from July 8, 2017 through July 16, 2017 devoted to aspects of the painter’s life, art and legacy. I begin with a…

Whale-of-our-Being

Tributaries Flow from Carl Beam

Jun 12th, 2016 Visual Arts Rob Reid 6 min read

The Canadian Clay & Glass Gallery established a close relationship with the late Carl Beam. In 2004 gallery curator Virginia Eichorn organized It’s All Relative, a touring exhibition featuring 50 ceramic works by Beam, wife Ann and daughter Anong. Following the artist’s death in July 2005 from complications due to diabetes, the Waterloo gallery hosted a memorial service. I was honoured to be invited as a…

TomThomson3

Tom Thomson on the Block

Jul 20th, 2015 Tom Thomson, Visual Arts Rob Reid 6 min read

Tom Thomson went missing on Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park on July 8, 1917. His body was recovered on July 16, 1917. To commemorate the centenary of the death of one of Canada’s great national icons, I am posting a blog each day devoted to aspects of the painter’s life, art and legacy. The second instalment in the series is an appraisal of George A….

Untitled (Winter at Dusk), 1920-30

 Artistic Journey through Life, through Nature

Jul 2nd, 2015 Visual Arts Rob Reid 7 min read

KITCHENER — I got to know Robert Achtemichuk when he was director of the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery. Seldom have a I met an artist so acutely uncomfortable in the skin of an institutional administrator — a position he held at the Waterloo gallery from 2004 through 2010. Happily, he’s back doing what he was placed on earth to do — making art. (I…

belwood

Grand River Suite

Jun 16th, 2015 Visual Arts Rob Reid 6 min read

CAMBRIDGE — June is the month when our thoughts begin meandering to the lazy, hazy days of summer and to summer activities such as canoeing, kayaking, hiking and fishing, not to mention open-air artistic endeavours. Consequently, thoughts turn to lakes, streams and rivers. For many who live in Waterloo Region and its immediate environs, rivers mean the Grand. Anyone who views the Grand as a…