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Spring into art

April 4th, 2019

David Brown Milne. Pink Billboard, c. 1912. Oil on canvas, Overall: 51 x 51 cm. The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. © Art Gallery of Ontario AGOID.104219

It’s finally here! The birds are chirping, the sun is out and the days are getting warmer. We don’t know about you, but we’re excited by the arrival of spring. And since we’re open for the first long weekend of the season (April 19 to 22), we’ve picked some of our favourite Canadian paintings from the AGO Collection to give you that springy vibe during your visit to the AGO.

We can feel the energy in the city turning up as we say goodbye to the frigid temperatures and welcome the warmer, walking-friendly weather. The bright green leaves and blue skies in David Brown Milne’s Pink Billboard (1912) (pictured above) reflect the vibrancy of a city on a lovely spring day. This work is on view in Gallery 212.

A fitting choice for the Easter long weekend, Cornelius Krieghoff’s Breaking Lent (or A Friday’s Surprise) (1847) depicts a scene of a family sharing a meal. Though usually famous for his winter scenes, this work is one of Kreighoff’s intimate looks at daily life. The AGO has over 150 works by Krieghoff with 63 currently on view. You’ll find this work in Gallery 204.

Cornelius Krieghoff. Breaking Lent (or A Friday’s Surprise), c. 1847. Oil on canvas, Overall: 36.6 x 54.4 cm .The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. © Art Gallery of Ontario 2009/472

You may be familiar with The West Wind, but Canadian landscape painter Tom Thomson has many other works in our Collection, including Spring Sunset, Algonquin Park (1916). This work depicts similar movement and energetic colours to The West Wind and has us longing for the warmer nights to come. Spend some time with this serene work on view in Gallery 216.

Tom Thomson. Spring Sunset, Algonquin Park, c. 1916. Oil on composite wood-pulp board, Overall: 21.7 x 26.8 cm. The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Photo: Michael Cullen

In many parts of the world, the dragonfly symbolizes change. Mark the change of the seasons with Song of the Dragonflies (1956) ) by Canadian artist Paul-Émile Borduas. On display in Gallery 206.

Paul-Emile Borduas. Song of the Dragonflies, 1956. Oil on canvas, Overall: 115.9 x 88.9 cm. The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. © Art Gallery of Ontario AGOID.68336

If you’re like us, you’re craving the greens, pinks, purples and yellows of the spring bloom. While you wait for the cherry blossoms of High Park to open, we suggest you visit Franklin Carmichael’s Wild Cherry (1938) in Gallery 210.

Franklin Carmichael. Wild Cherry, 1938. Oil on hardboard, Overall: 75.7 x 91.5 cm. The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario, 2017. © Art Gallery of Ontario 2017/223

Like what you see? All of these paintings and many more can be found on Level 2 in our Thompson Collection of Canadian Art and are included with General Admission. As always, admission for AGO Members is free.

We look forward to seeing you during our special holiday hours on Good Friday (April 19) and Easter Monday (April 22) – we’re open each day from 10:30 am to 4 pm.

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