THE GROUP OF SEVEN
The Group of Seven, once known as the Algonquin School was a group of Canadian Landscape painters active from 1920 to 1933. The original founding members were: Lawren S. Harris. J.E.H. MacDonald, Arthur Lismer, Fredrick Varley, Frank Johnston, Franklin Carmichael, and A.Y. Jackson.
They were Canada's first internationally recognized art movement. Strongly believing that Canadian art could be developed through direct contact with the country's vast and unique landscape. The goal was to change Canadian taste and values through the distribution of painting, articles, and publications, encouraging collectors of Canadian art. The group presented the dense, northern boreal forest of the Canadian Shield as a transcendent, spiritual force. Their depictions of Canada's rugged wind-swept forest panoramas were eventually equated with a romanticized notion of Canada's strength and independence.
The painter Tom Tomson was an important influence on the group although was never a member as so many believe. A fishing guide and occasional forest ranger, he was an avid outdoorsman, and encouraged the members to paint the rugged landscapes of Northern Ontario. It was there they found the imagery that would imprint itself on the Canadian consciousness.
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