Friday, May 4, 2012

I Weep.....

Now, I realize that as an artist-y kind of soul and a member of the human race, that not everyone shares my love and somewhat sketchy -( bwhahaha - oh that was so punsical!)- knowledge of the art world but truly I have to weep at times for the decided lack of any idea of what is important history of our world...well, my part of the world which is Canada. 
Anylet'sfillinthebackgroundway, I went into the local Credit Union to attend to business of the monetary kind a few days ago, which was mainly paying bills ...sigh.....but I was also correcting a mistake on my new cheques I had ordered. (my name) (again) (for crying out loud) 
  The cheques company that my CU deals with also offers a choice of images you can have added to your cheque face to 'pretty' it up, I most certainly doesn't make the task of cheque writing any pleasanter... and I chose the "Group of Seven". 
Now, let's take a small aside here to talk about the group of Seven. Those of you who are Canadian reading this should - I fervently hope - know who they are, but for my visitors from other parts of the world....and apparently there are (ZING!) I will add a bit of background. 
...and to make my onerous typing task easier, I paste from Wikipedia (and if you could see my 2 finger style, you'd agree):
"The Group of Seven — sometimes known as the Algonquin school — were a group of Canadian landscape painters from 1920 to 1933, originally consisting of Franklin Carmichael(1890–1945), Lawren Harris (1885–1970), A. Y. Jackson (1882–1972), Frank Johnston (1888–1949), Arthur Lismer (1885–1969), J. E. H. MacDonald (1873–1932), and Frederick Varley(1881–1969).
Two artists commonly associated with the group are Tom Thomson (1877–1917) and Emily Carr (1871–1945). Although he died before its official formation, Thomson had a significant influence on the group. In his essay "The Story of the Group of Seven", Lawren Harris wrote that Thomson was "a part of the movement before we pinned a label on it"; Thomson's paintings "The West Wind" and "The Jack Pine" are two of the group's most iconic pieces. Emily Carr was also closely associated with the Group of Seven, though was never an official member.
Believing that a distinct Canadian art could be developed through direct contact with nature, The Group of Seven is most famous for its paintings inspired by the Canadian landscape, and initiated the first major Canadian national art movement. The Group was succeeded by the Canadian Group of Painters in the 1930s, which did allow female members."
So these guys pretty much put Canada on the map art wise. Before that, Canada was considered a benighted backwater lacking in any talent or culture whatsoever. Their paintings grace numerous things - like my cheques - which brings us back to the story. 
Seriously, in my life, nothing goes straight from A to B......but there you go. 
As I was making the corrections to my cheques (my name) (again) (for crying out loud), I was bantering with my young teller. She noticed the paintings and asked if they were mine. After being taken aback and my desire to say yes - who wouldn't, flattering as that is - I said "Well, no, that's the Group of Seven.....don't you recognize them?" 
And she admitted she didn't even know who they were.
To say my jaw dropped is putting it lightly.....actually I think I put on a performance of being astounded by that news. (loudly exclaiming 'WHAT!?! YOU DON"T KNOW WHO THE GROUP OF SEVEN ARE !??!' is more like it) (poor child)
Now in her defense, I blame the Educational System that relegates all ART to the back burner of importance and leaves it out of our history. 
Even so....I weep for the graphic illustration of how little art means to the world in general. 
The Painting: "DHARANA" by F. H. Varley, 1932 Oil on Canvas.

ps...appologies to the folks who have already viewed this post before this final version...3? 4? corrections later....I'm still learning the new system and what you see on your draft version isn't always what comes up in the finished version....and, ok ok, I'm impatient and load it up and skip PREVIEW.....eesh. 
Then again....maybe it's just me.....

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