The original was created using oil on canvas.
“I felt painting was the way I could discuss things, question the world around me. It was my way of looking at things.”
British artist Hurvin Anderson is best known for creating paintings that richly capture his Jamaican heritage. Mount Royal, however, was based on a photograph his sister took in Canada and sent home to their family in Birmingham.
Monumental in size, the original being 102 x 76in., Mount Royal vividly captures a mother and her young child skating on the frozen Lac des Castors in Quebec. Both representational and abstract at once, the artist’s quick brush strokes capture a beautiful shared moment in time. The thick impasto sky adds three-dimensionality, while paint drips down the canvas in places like melting snow.
Similar to Peter Doig, whom he studied under at the Royal College of Art in London, Anderson is moved by notions of memory and displacement. When Anderson painted this piece, he had yet to travel to Canada. Therefore, by reworking the photograph, he places himself within an unfamiliar environment, thus bridging the distance between his sister and himself.
Do you have a photograph of a friend or family member who lives far away or whom you are separated from while sheltering in place? How can you rework it – in paint, clay, even pasta, or other found objects – to make yourself feel closer to them?
*impasto – The texture produced by the thickness of pigment (paint) in a painting.
For more information on the artist, visit tate.org.uk/art/artists/hurvin-anderson-12583/turner-prize-2017-biography
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-Johnny DePalma, Owner / Curator
-Janelle Graves, Art Historian / Museum Educator