This painting depicts a river whose waters reflect a golden-yellow and orange sky. The snow along the riverbanks is tinged with mauve and blue. In the distance, hazy buildings are visible on a snow-covered hill.

Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté

(Arthabaska, Quebec, 1869 – Daytona Beach, Florida, 1937)


Mauve and Gold

about 1912

Oil on canvas

60.5 x 73.5 cm

Gift of Moffat Dunlap, from the estate of his mother, Mrs. R. A. Dunlap, 1947

Art Gallery of Ontario, 2884

© Art Gallery of Ontario

The oil on canvas Mauve and Gold pictures the snow-covered banks of a river in the Arthabaska region of Quebec, one of Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté’s favourite subjects. Although the painting is figurative, the forms are so indistinct that it almost seems abstract. The small dabs of colour that give shape to the landscape illustrate the strong influence of Impressionism on Suzor-Coté’s work. Winter scenes were popular with many Canadian painters, including Maurice Cullen.

Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté was a painter, sculptor and church decorator who trained in Paris at the École des Beaux-Arts. Much of his work dealt with regional themes, but in a decidedly modern manner. Recognized as the dean of Quebec landscape artists, Suzor-Coté renewed the iconography of snow-covered Canadian nature by applying his European training to the North American countryside. His work was very popular both in Canada and in Europe, where his honours included a bronze medal won at the 1900 Paris Universal Exposition. 


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