The Group of Seven
Finding Canada's Identity

Who is The Group of Seven ?

The Group of Seven was a group of seven Canadian painters who changed the Canadian art scene in the 1920’s. The seven original artists are: Franklin Carmichael, Lawren Harris, A.Y. Jackson, Franz Johnston, Arthur Lismer, J.E.H. MacDonald, and F.H. Varley.

Group of Seven

Members of the Group of Seven at the Arts & Letters Club in Toronto, clockwise from the left: A.Y. Jackson, Fred Varley, Lawren Harris, Barker Fairley, Franz Johnston, Arthur Lismer and J.E.H. Macdonald
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Canadian Art in the 1920`s

Canadians in the 1920`s were not known for their artwork. In Canada at the time only 2% of art sold was made by Canadian artists. European art was the most well known and was supposed to be the best and most stunning Art. It was thought by many that Canada did not have nice enough colours and settings to paint, and that the settings Canada did have were impossible to paint. The Group of Seven made it their goal to show how beautiful Canada was, and how it was possible to paint.

The Group of Seven

The Group of Seven wanted to start a new style of painting so that they art did not look like European paintings. They began to use a style called 'Art Nouveau' which is a style that used simple forms and bright colours. The Group of Seven travelled to the wilderness of the Canadian Shield to make sketches then returned to Toronto to finish painting the images. It was very hard and dangerous to travel to such remote places in the 1920's. The Group always travelled and painted together, which is why the same style and locations are seen.

What happened to the Group of Seven ?

The first exhibit (art show) from The Group of Seven received both good and bad reviews. However, over time the artists and art became very popular and well known around the world. The Group of Seven had accomplished their goal of showing the beautiful side to Canada, and showing that Canadian art is important in the art scene.


Last modified: Tuesday, 26 July 2011, 5:04 PM