Barbara Howard, RCA


Barbara Howard, RCA

Barbara Howard, RCA (March 10, 1926 - December 7, 2002) was a Canadian artist and wood engraver.

Biography

Born in Long Branch, Ontario in 1926, Helen Barbara Howard was a professional artist who produced work consistently throughout her life, from her graduation in 1951 as an honours silver medallist from the Ontario College of Art, where she was a pupil of Will Ogilvie and Jock Macdonald, until her unexpected death in 2002. In the early 1950s she lived in London, England, studying at the St Martins School of Art and immersing herself in the English landscape. She also travelled to Europe, visiting galleries in Rome, Venice, Florence, Paris and Madrid. Returning to Canada, in the late 1950s and early sixties she was showing regularly at the Picture Loan Society, established by Douglas Duncan in 1936 to exhibit, sell and lend out the works of contemporary Canadian artists. Several Canadian public collections possess Howard drawings and paintings acquired via the Douglas Duncan estate, as Duncan was a great collector of her work. ["Pictures From The Douglas M. Duncan Collection", University of Toronto Press, 1975] In 1975 she was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts.

Howard's interests as an artist were always entwined with her passion for the natural world and with her search to express the experience of being human as part of a greater whole. ["Barbara Howard's Ecologies", Martha Fleming, Canadian Art, Summer 2006] In her sixties she devoted a decade of work to an extensive series of cetacean studies, "Encounters with Whales". These enormous canvases, some as large as 18 feet across, have never been publicly exhibited.

In the late 1990s until her death in 2002, Barbara Howard returned to her lifelong fascination with light, night skies, the reflective surface of water. In these last paintings, the recurrence of circular elements, an abstraction of natural forms and a balancing of darkness and light all suggest the artist's deep feeling for the natural world and a celebration of its unity. Her paintings can be seen on the website "Barbara Howard's Unfolding Visual World". ["Barbara Howard's Unfolding Visual World" [http://www.barbarahoward.ca/] ]

Collections

PUBLIC COLLECTIONS
* National Gallery of Canada
* Art Gallery of Ontario
* Art Gallery of Hamilton
* Tom Thomson Art Gallery, Owen Sound, ON
* Windsor Art Gallery
* Art Gallery of Northumberland, Cobourg, ON
* Museum London
* Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, B.C.
* Glenhyrst Art Gallery of Brant
* Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, ON
* Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery
* Rodman Hall, St. Catharines
* Province of Ontario Collection

CORPORATE COLLECTIONS
* Mingan Island Cetacean Study (M.I.C.S.), Longue-Pointe-de-Mingan, Quèbec
* Esso Resources
* Pan-Canadian Petroleum
* Northern Telecom
* Citibank Canada
* Canadian Tire Corporation
* Mary Kay Cosmetics

Public Collections of the Gauntlet Press

* The National Library of Canada, Ottawa
* The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto
* Memorial University of Newfoundland Libraries, Rare Books Collection
* The Bruce Peel Special Collections Library, University of Alberta
* The University of British Columbia Library
* University of Western Ontario, London, ON
* The MILLS Research Collections, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON
* The University of Calgary, Alberta, Special Collections
* The Berg Collection, New York Public Library
* The Harris Collection of Poetry and Plays, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island
* The Library of Congress, Washington, DC
* University at Buffalo, New York, Special Collections
* The Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass
* The Bodleian Library, Oxford, England
* The British Library, London, England

Exhibitions

SOLO EXHIBITIONS
* Picture Loan Society, Toronto 1957, 1958, 1960, 1965
* Wells Gallery, Ottawa, 1966, 1982, 1984
* Fleet Gallery, Winnipeg, 1966
* Victoria College, Toronto, 1966
* Sisler Gallery, Toronto, 1974, 1976
* Hart House, University of Toronto, 1975
* "The Event in the Mind", Prince Arthur Galleries, Toronto, 1980; catalogue
* Yaneff Gallery, Toronto, 1983
* Massey College, Toronto, 1984
* Latcham Gallery, Stouffville, 1985
* O'Keefe Centre, Toronto, 1986
* National Library of Canada, 1986
* University College, Toronto, 1987
* Georgetown Library & Cultural Centre, 1988
* The Arts and Letters Club of Toronto, 1993
* Victoria Library, University of Toronto, 1995
* Robarts Library, University of Toronto, 1999
* The Upstairs Gallery, Art Gallery of Northumberland, 2003
* "Seeking Light: Last Paintings & Selected Drawings", Art Gallery of Northumberland, Cobourg, 2006; catalogue

GROUP EXHIBITIONS
* Ontario Society of Artists, 1958, 1959
* Women's Committee, Art Gallery of Ontario, 1958, 1969
* Douglas Duncan Collection, Victoria College, Toronto, 1962
* Toronto Collects, Art Gallery of Ontario, 1961
* Women Artists, Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto, 1961
* Canadian Artists, Eaton's College Street, 1961
* Canadian Society of Graphic Arts, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1963
* National Home Show, 1960, 1961, 1962
* C.U.S.A.C. Travelling Show, Hart House, 1958-9
* Women's Committee, London Art Gallery, 1962
* Canadian Watercolours, Drawings & Prints, National Gallery of Canada, 1966
* Douglas Duncan Collection, Windsor, London, Hamilton, 1967
* Drawings and Sculpture, Art Gallery of Ontario, 1976
* "The Living Image", Macdonald Gallery, Toronto (3 artists); catalogue
* R.C.A. Centennial Contemporary Exhibition, Toronto, 1980
* Inaugural Exhibition, Academy House, R.C.A., Toronto, 1987-88
* "Art Under Fire", Academy House, R.C.A., Toronto, 1988
* "Fine Printing: The Private Press in Canada". Travelling exhibition: Toronto, Fredricton, Calgary, Grimsby, Saskatoon, Brandon, Pointe Claire, Halifax, Saint John, 1995-1997; catalogue
* "Toronto in Print", Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, 1998; catalogue

Bibliography

* "Twenty-Eight Drawings by Barbara Howard", The Martlet Press, Toronto, 1970
* "Pictures From The Douglas M. Duncan Collection", University of Toronto Press, 1975
* "Passionate Spirits: A History of The Royal Canadian Academy of Arts 1880-1980", Rebecca Sisler, Clarke Irwin, Toronto 1980
* "The Invisible Woman", Hubert de Santana, Today magazine, The Toronto Star, Nov 8, 1980, p.10-11
* "Barbara Howard", Hubert de Santana, City & Country Home, Vol.3/ No.2, April 1984, p.132-141
* "A Sacred Trust: The Hidden Worlds of Barbara Howard", Hubert de Santana, Equinox No. 34, July/ August 1987, p.68-75
* "The White Line: Wood Engraving in Canada Since 1945", Porcupine's Quill, 1990. ISBN 0-88984-117-9
* "End Grain: Contemporary Wood Engraving in North America", Barberian Press Mission B.C., 1995
* "Fine Printing: The Private Press in Canada", The Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild, 1995. ISBN 0-7727-6015-2
* "DA: A Journal of the Printing Arts", Number 44. Special Issue on the Gauntlet Press Spring/Summer 1999, Porcupine’s Quill, Erin, ON
* "The Sounding Light: Richard Outram and Barbara Howard", The New Quarterly, Vol.21 No.4, 2001/2002
* "Canadian Notes & Queries", Number 63, 2003, John Metcalf, ed. Special issue devoted to the Gauntlet Press and the work of Barbara Howard and Richard Outram.
* "Transfiguring the World: Barbara Howard 1926–2002", Martha Fleming and Rosemary Kilbourn, SKETCH, Fall 2005, Ontario College of Art & Design Alumni Association.
* "Seeking Light: Last Paintings and Selected Drawings". Introd. D. E. Carter and Melanie Browne, with text by Barbara Howard. Cobourg, Ont.: Art Gallery of Northumberland, 2006.
* "Barbara Howard's Ecologies", Martha Fleming, Canadian Art, Summer 2006.

References


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