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Top 10 facts about Maud Lewis’ art

This blog was written and submitted by the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, home of the largest public collection of Maud Lewis’ art and her original house.

In celebration of local favourite Maud Lewis making it to the big screen, we wanted to share 10 interesting facts about her art work progression to becoming one of Canada’s most famous folk-artists.

  1. In the early years of Maud and Everett’s marriage, Everett collected the dregs of paint from around the community, so Maud used whatever colours were available. Often the colours were very vivid, as one of Everett’s best sources was French Shore Acadian fishermen who painted their boats with bright colours.
  1. With limited resources for professional paint supplies, Maud used whatever was on hand including a Campbell’s soup tin for turpentine and sardine tins for paints. She also used various materials as her canvas, including boards, scraps of wallpaper and occasionally shells, beach rocks and household objects.
  1. Maud painted with tiny, quick strokes straight through without stopping until she was done. She used many of the same images in her paintings, but often infused them with her sense of humour and unique style, including three legged oxen, leaves on the trees in the snow.
  1. Maud was a prolific painter, sometimes painting as many as two to three pictures a day. She sold her paintings to whoever came across the house, including to Premier Robert Stanfield who visited her in 1965.
  1. Her standard price was $5 or $10 for larger works. Despite the number of pieces she sold, Maud never considered herself a fine artist.
  1. Well known within the community, Maud started to gain more regional and national attention after a series of articles and documentaries in the late 1960’s including a CBC Telescope broadcast. She was called the Grandma Moses of Canada, and two of her paintings were bought by President Richard Nixon’s administration. Their whereabouts are now unknown. President Nixon sent Everett condolences upon hearing of Maud’s death.
  1. Sometimes she signed her work, sometimes she did not. Sometimes she used an e on the end of her first name and sometimes she did not. Her signature tends to run uphill, and because she had trouble painting the letter S, it is often bigger as a result.
  1. Later in life, and as her health continued to decline, she used cut-out figures, which is why many of her oxen and other figures in later paintings are exactly the same size and outlined in pencil.
  1. In the year before her death, Everett began painting himself and mimicked Maud’s style. He sold his works alongside Maud’s.
  1. In her lifetime, Maud never earned more than $10 for a single piece of artwork. Now, Maud’s paintings are collected the world over. The current record for a Maud Lewis original is just over $22,000 earned at auction in 2017.

Facts provided by The Painted House of Maud Lewis– by Laurie Hamilton and The Illuminated Maud Lewis– Lance Woolaver and Bob Brooks.

Don’t forget, you can see Maud Lewis’ house and many pieces of art on display in the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.

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Top 13 facts about local folk-artist, Maud Lewis

This blog was written and submitted by the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, home of the largest public collection of Maud Lewis’ art and her original house.

If you are from Nova Scotia, there is a high probability you know of celebrated folk-artist Maud Lewis, but if you aren’t from the area there’s a good chance you don’t know who she was!

Here are 13 facts you may not have known about Maud Lewis:  Continue reading

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9 BEST routes for Canoeing and Kayaking in Halifax!

In the Halifax region, there are over 1,000 lakes, 20 rivers, countless streams and 23 major coastal areas, providing those of us living in or visitng the region amazing opportunities for canoeing and kayaking.

Before a canoe or kayak adventure, make sure to plan your route! Water conditions change frequently with the weather, so always check water levels and the local forecast. I recommend reviewing the Canoe/Kayak Nova Scotia website for route information and maps.

Some of my favourite locations for canoeing and kayaking in Halifax include:  Continue reading

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Learn about your family history for FREE at Pier 21

Between the years of 1928 to 1971, over one million immigrants arrived at Halifax’s Pier 21. Some new arrivals chose to stay in the area, while many others voyaged across North America – settling in places they’d probably never heard of before arriving on this side of the Atlantic.

Do you know when your family arrived in Canada or what path they took to arrive in Canada? The Scotiabank Family History Centre is here to help!

Located on the ground level of Pier 21, The Scotiabank Family History Centre is a FREE reference service to help you trace your own family immigration story. Unable to make it to the museum? You can get started with search right away with an online research request!

Not limited to just those who arrived in North America at Pier 21, the Scotiabank Family History Centre houses information on “migration, nautical history, waves of immigration to Canada, ethnic groups and genealogy.” Immigration records are available on microfilm from 1925 to 1935, with the Family History Centre staff having access to arrival records dating back to 1865. The onsite research experts are able to search U.S seaports, including Boston and New York, to give you a comprehensive look at North American immigration arrivals.

Copies of any records can be purchased for $15.00 each. Clip-framed, customized ship images can be purchased for $20.00.

Are you interested in learning more about your family’s journey to Canada? Visit the Scotiabank Family History Centre at Pier 21. Accessing the searchable database, as well as getting general and genealogical inquiries is free of charge.

Learn more on the Pier 21 website.