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Mohr, Ingeborg
White Space #27 White Space #27
1979 1979

Deciding to become an abstract artist was, for Ingeborg Mohr, ‘an arriving at rather than a jumping into.’ She immigrated to Canada in 1954, having studied art history at the University of Breslau and trained as an artist at the Schools of Fine Arts in Linz and Graz, Austria. After living for a year in Saskatchewan, she moved with her husband and three children to Toronto and there, for the first time, ‘saw abstract art.’ Toronto in the mid-1950s was a burgeoning scene, with the Painters 11 championing non-objective expression and independent art dealers rising to the occasion. By the 1960s Mohr was herself experimenting with abstraction in watercolour and batik. The following decade she turned to oil and acrylic, favouring paper over canvas because it allowed greater freedom of movement. In 1981, Mohr moved to Howe Island, near Kingston, where she lived and worked for the rest of her life.

‘Something within me is continuously dissatisfied,’ Mohr said in 1983, ‘and pushes me relentlessly towards a process of simplification.’ Her oeuvre moves through themes, such as White Space, Signs and Signification, Notes on Dark Ground, Pages from a Book, Evocation, Quest, Collage, and Of Matter and Spirit. Each theme she would plumb in series, investigating variations of a particular configuration in multiple works before moving on to the next theme. When asked about meaning, Mohr always evaded description, and expressed instead her hope that any new painting she brought into being ‘will exceed me in depth and reach.’

Mohr, Ingeborg
Innsbruck, Austria 1921-Ganaoque (Howe Island) ON 2004 Innsbruck, Austria 1921-Ganaoque (Howe Island) ON 2004
White Space #27 White Space #27
1979 1979
oil and oil pastel on paper oil and oil pastel on paper
66.6 x 51.4 cm
Gift of Veronica Mohr, 2016 Gift of Veronica Mohr, 2016
59-013.02

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