This amateur who took care of organizing the Toronto arts community painted at first some sceneries of streets and of logging. His art that might appear to be basically Canadian was however triggered by his discovery of Scandinavian art and especially of paintings by Gustaf Fjaestad at an exhibition in Buffalo in 1913.
Harris worked in his studio at that time. He imagines the pure colors of snowy landscapes in cold weather. On November 26 in Toronto, Heffel sells a Winter landscape, lot 120 estimated CAD 1.2 million. Here is the link to the auction house's website.
This oil on canvas of large size for this artist, 121 x 127 cm, was painted in 1916 or 1917 at a time when Tom Thomson was interested in similar themes. The picture is divided into well-structured sections of homogeneous texture that contrast sharply with each other from the heavy white snow of ground and of fir branches up to the bright blue of the sea (or lake) through the tissues of forests and cliffs.
This creative period gives Harris the urge to explore by himself the far north in winter. From 1918 he organizes auto trips of his group. The light on Lake Superior is even more blinding than it was in his imagination. His increasingly purified style becomes the most dramatic expression of the chilling landscapes of Canada.
SOLD for CAD 3.66M including premium