1815 - 1872
Indian Group in Winter Landscape
oil on canvas on board, circa 1847
signed and on verso titled Indian Group in Winter Landscape (Huron Indians) on the Dominion Gallery photo-certificate of authenticity and inscribed with the Dominion Gallery inventory #H4296
11 1/4 x 12 7/8 in 28.6 x 32.7 cm
Estimate: $15,000 - $25,000
Preview at: Heffel Montreal
Watson Art Galleries, Montreal
Collection of G.R. Locker
Dominion Gallery, Montreal
Acquired from the above by the present Private Collection, Montreal, 1972
Marius Barbeau, Cornelius Krieghoff: Pioneer Painter of North America, 1934, pages 131 - 132
Indian Group in Winter Landscape is a treasure that has passed through the hands of distinguished gallerists such as Dr. Max Stern of Montreal’s Dominion Gallery, and whose specific subject is referenced in the most renowned catalogue on the artist’s work, by Marius Barbeau. When a painting by Cornelius Krieghoff has this kind of thoroughbred provenance, it captures the history of the period not only through the image, but also through the pedigree of its provenance.
Barbeau describes this particular scene from Krieghoff’s early Longueuil period, depicting a Caughnawaga (Kahnawake) grouping going about daily life circa 1847. Notes on the painting by Barbeau are shorthand in style, using terms from his time, with the description as follows: “Indian with red toque and long hair looking to right; white blanket coat. Woman in blue blanket, a pack strapped from head and basket on her back. Both on snowshoes. A man pulls at empty toboggan in left corner facing Indian woman with beaver hat and little girl beside her turned towards left. Large spruce trees on bluff to left covered with snow. Ravine where they stand right in centre; hill to right; grass in foreground centre. Sky overcast. Mount Royal in background."
Krieghoff depicts this finely detailed scene with confident brush-strokes; the paint work in the snowshoes in particular is exquisite, a fine latticework that is very carefully drawn. When viewed through an ethnographic lens, Krieghoff’s paintings are valuable records of Indigenous dress and material culture in nineteenth-century Quebec.
This lot is accompanied by a photo-certificate of authenticity signed by Dr. Max Stern from the Dominion Gallery, dated December 15, 1972. The certificate is inscribed by Stern: "This painting is described in the book Cornelius Krieghoff by Marius Barbeau published by the Macmillan Company, Toronto in 1934, titled as Indian Group in Winter Landscape. The provenance shows that it was acquired by Mr. G.R. Locker from Watson Art Galleries in Montreal." On the certificate the work is titled Indian Group in Winter Landscape (Huron Indians), however, the circa date indicates that Krieghoff painted the work during his time living at Longueuil and Montreal, when he would have been in contact with the Mohawk and Iroquois peoples.
Estimate: $15,000 - $25,000
All prices are in Canadian Dollars
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