Sampson - Matthews Wanted for Purchase or Consignment

(1939 - 1955)

During World War II, Group of Seven members A.Y. Jackson and A.J. Casson initiated a plan to bring contemporary art to Canada's soldiers. Jackson was a veteran of the First World War and wanted to improve the appearance of the drab army barracks and barren mess halls. At the time A.J. Casson was the art director at the Toronto design firm of Sampson-Matthews Limited. With Casson’s expertise in silkscreen printing they were able to produce a very high quality print at low cost. Screening oil colours onto masonite board produced artworks of vivid colour that were also exceedingly durable.

The landscape subjects chosen represented scenes from every part of Canada. Many of the works were already well known and considered masterpieces in their time. Some of the artists whose work was selected included Emily Carr, Lawren Harris, Arthur Lismer, Thoreau MacDonald, David Milne and Tom Thomson. Among others, Charles Comfort and A.Y. Jackson contributed original works conceived especially for this series. Apart from brightening Canadian Army Barracks, these prints, which were sent to all parts of Canada, to England and to Germany, were used to recall the beauty and dignity of the homeland for the troops. They instilled not only a patriotic pride but also a pride in Canada's artists.

Historical Sale Highlights

Following is a random selection of collectible works we have previously sold. Refresh this page to see more items.

Mallard Ducks
Leo Mol
Ceramic (7.5x6x9.5 in) 1960
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Mare and Foal in Spring Meadow
Maud Lewis
Oil on Panel (11.5x14 in) circa 1965
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Rosedale Golf and Country Club - It's Hard for Us to Realize
William Kurelek
mixed media (22x41.75 in) 1972
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Pioneer Family 2/15
Leo Mol
Bronze (15x11x5 in) 1979
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Sketch at Little Turtle Lake
James Edward Hervey MacDonald
Oil on Panel (8 1/2 x10.5 in) 1924
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La Conversation
Jean Paul Lemieux
oil on canvas (41x67 inch) 1968
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Summer Idyll
Walter Joseph Phillips
wood block prints (21.75x12.25 in) 1926
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Duck Hunting
Cornelius Krieghoff
oil on canvas (18x26.75 in)
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Late Light on Storm Islet, LOTW
Robert Genn
Acrylic (14x18 in) 2011
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‘Spirit of the Fraser River’ (Salish Mask)
Gerry Sheena
Carved, painted wood with grass (41x15x12 in) 2004
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