How The Group Of Seven And Its Impact On Canadian Culture

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The Group of Seven, first known as the Algonquin School, was a group of Canadian artists. Arthur Lismer is credited with naming the group which was founded in 1920 and lasted until 1933. The group’s purpose was to create an art style that broke European art traditions and raised awareness for the Canadian landscape. The original seven members were: They were later joined by A.J. Casson in 1926; Edwin Holgate in 1930; and LeMoine FitzGerald in 1932. When not painting on location, they all lived in Toronto and painted at The Studio Building at 25 Severn St. in Rosedale which Harris’ money helped to build. The Group of Seven significantly impacted Canada’s culture in a variety of ways. It caused the first major art movement in Canada; it …show more content…

Lawren Harris said, “We were told, quite seriously, that there never would be a Canadian art because we had no art tradition.” The haters were wrong, the Group of Seven inspired many Canadian Artists to shape Canada’s art tradition using the beauty of Canada’s landscape. The Professional Native Indian Artists Association was started in 1973 by Daphne Odjig. This group promoted Canadian land and native culture and earned themselves the nickname “The Indigenous Group of Seven”. Members included Jackson Beardy, Eddy Cobiness, Alex Janvier, Norval Morrisseau, Daphne Odjig, Carl Ray and Joseph Sanchez. Furthermore, according to the Canadian Encyclopedia, the Group of Seven’s “influence is seen in artists as diverse as abstract painter Jack Bush”. For two decades, he was a landscape and figure painter inspired by the Group of Seven. Later, he became a member of The Painters Eleven. The Group of Seven’s legacy is also seen in schools through art programs which teach the technique of the Group of Seven. By the 1950s reproductions of their artwork are said to have been in every school in Canada. Their influence is still felt today in school art programs. For example, at Centennial Secondary School, under the direction of Mrs. Cristos, grade nine students in 2022 produced art reflecting the Canadian landscape inspired by techniques and …show more content…

According to the website, The Art Story, the public gradually became more open to art that celebrated Canada's natural beauty“. As Canada was recovering from the hardships of WWI, the emerging landscape paintings from the Group of Seven caused artists and other Canadians to appreciate their land. They began to respect Canada’s natural beauty as uniquely Canadian. The Group of Seven images of Canada began to define Canada’s identity as a country separate from Britain. Coincidentally, their art movement between 1920 and 1933 coincides with the signing of the Statute of Westminster in 1931 which gave Canada autonomy from Britain. No doubt the works of The Group of Seven would have encouraged Canadians to get out and explore Canada before The Great Depression. Today, the Northern Ontario Magazine website writes, “See the inspiration for Canada’s greatest artists up close in some of the country’s wildest and most breathtaking landscapes”.Many today continue to appreciate Canada’s landscape through the eyes of the Group of Seven as tours are available today in Ontario to visit the areas they painted. To add, according to the Art Story website, “ The Group of Seven sought rather to preserve (through their art) their country's unspoiled terrain”. They rebranded Canada so it was not a land of beavers, lumber, and fish

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