Canadian artist Tony Urquhart had a legacy of groundbreaking work: ‘He was born to create art’

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Canadian artist Tony Urquhart is remembered as a “true artist” who lived a life full of joy, art and community. He died on January 26th at the age of 87.

“People who bought his work in the 1960s also bought his work in the 2000s,” recalls James Rottman of James Rottman Fine Art, who represented Urquhart for the past 20 years. He emphasized the loyalty of the artist’s followers and the rich artistic community he has built around him.

“He is one of the last generation of painters,” Rodman said. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Urukhart was recognized as one of Canada’s pioneering abstract artists, belonged to the Isaacs Gallery in Toronto, and later joined the Heart of London Group (including Jack). It was specifically defined as one of the painters I belonged to. Chambers, Greg Carnoe, Murray Fabro. )

Urukhart is a multimedia artist whose paintings, drawings and unique “boxes” have gained a lot of recognition both at home and abroad.

Rodman remembers Urukhart’s freedom of expression. “He wasn’t influenced or influenced by style or school. He was a true artist.” His mixed media work was groundbreaking, plexiglass, organic materials, Box carvings incorporating wood, seeds and shells, and everyday objects were far more advanced than other Canadian artists of the time.

“He created the installation art before it was defined in Canada,” Rodman said. Paintings may feature garden close-ups, color explosions, and beautiful tones.

Urkhart’s work has been held in collections around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and the French National Museum in Paris. The Art Gallery of Ontario has 27 works by Urukhart, including several working drawings.

“Always paying attention to the serious impact that art can have on our lives, Tony Urquhart was a prolific artist, teacher and art activist. He co-founded the organization. CARFAC catalyzed the protection and rewarding of Canadian artists (which is still the industry standard paid to artists), “said Georgian Uhlyarik, Fredrick S. Eaton Curator of Canadian Art at AGO. It states as follows. Statement to the star. “I miss the 2008 conference, which was enriched by our conversations over the years and exhibited one of his signature sculptures.”

Among his many honors, Urquhart is a member of the Order of Canada and was awarded the 2009 Governor General’s Literature Award. He has been a member of the Faculty of Fine Arts at the University of Waterloo for 32 years, and before retiring in 1999, he taught young art students for generations. The university also has an archive.

He was also known as an illustrator and picture book, including a special edition of Nino Rich’s Life of the Saints and a novel by his wife Jane Urquhart.

The poet Penkemp, a family friend for decades, remembers Tony as “a kind, creative, generous man and a wonderful artist.” When he was selected as the first artist to stay at Western University in 1960, she states that his “friendliness at the time and thereafter bridged many cultural divisions and feuds.”

Tony Urquhart was born on April 9, 1934 in Niagara Falls, Ontario. His art, especially his landscape, was influenced by his upbringing in Niagara Falls. Until 1960, his parents, siblings, and he lived with his funeral grandparents.

The house was located on a large land, including part of the battlefield where the Battle of Lundy’s Lane in 1814 took place. The family maintained a vast Victorian garden, and at an early age Urkhart lived in this magical landscape. He told the star in 2000 that he probably painted before he fully mastered his speech.

And he created the life of art from there. “It was that he created art every day for 60 years,” Rodman said. “That’s what he was born to do.”

Adult at a time he called an “abstract expressionist with a hairy chest,” Urukhart enrolled in Buffalo’s All-Bright Art School, opposite the current Albright-Knox Museum. This was the time when the gallery was purchasing the works of Mark Rothko and Willem de Kooning, and it was widely instructed by critic Clement Greenberg that the painting itself was the only suitable subject of painting. It was when it was observed.

In his later years, Urukhart was diagnosed with dementia. His daughter, Emily Arkart, wrote a book about her father in 2020, The Age of Creativity: Art, Memory, My Father, and Me, exploring aging and the creative mind.

She remembered traveling with her family from an early age. She often stayed in one place for a period of time so that Tony could immerse himself in one visual and draw it many times in the series.

Emily told the star in an interview, “My dad is drawn out of life, but he always changes it … if there are three windows or they are in a particular place, it will be an exact replica. I don’t. “

Urukhart leaves his wife Jane, daughter Allison, Robin, Emily, and son Aidan. He died to his son Marsh.

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