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Harrison, Elizabeth
Harrisons’
1939

From 1939 to 1943, Elizabeth Harrison worked part-time assisting and teaching studio art courses with André Biéler at Queen’s University. In June 1941, she undertook the pivotal role as secretary for the first Conference of Canadian Artists, which brought together artists from across the country in Kingston, Ontario. She and Biéler subsequently co-authored the conference Proceedings.

During this time, Harrison commuted by ferry from Garden Island, three kilometers across the bay from Kingston, where she shared a cottage home with her husband Eric Harrison, a Queen’s University history professor, and their daughter. They lived on Garden Island year-round, from 1940 to 1943. The cottage is the subject of her painting Harrisons’, which reveals the serene landscape of the islands at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River. Garden Island was Harrison’s artistic sanctuary where she could make time, as she said, “to follow my calling as a painter.”

 
Harrison, Elizabeth
born London, England 1907; died Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario 2001
Harrisons’
1939
Oil on board
30.0 x 40.3 cm
Purchase, Donald Murray Shepherd Bequest Fund, 2015
58-022

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