Harold Town

Ontario painter and printmaker Harold Town was born in Toronto on June 13, 1924, and died on the outskirts of Peterborough on December 27, 1990. From 1942 to 1944, he attended Western Technical-Commercial School and the Ontario College of Art (now Ontario College of Art and Design University). In 1953, he founded Painters Eleven together with 10 other Toronto abstract painters. This group, disbanded in 1960, had a significant influence on Canadian major artistic trends of the era. During the same period of time, Harold Town created '' single autographic prints'? which gave him international recognition, namely prizes in Ljubljana (Slovenia, for-merly Yugoslavia) and in Santiago (Chile). It was during his first solo exhibition at the Picture Loan Society (1954) that some of his prints were bought by prestigious museums such as the Art Gallery of Ontario, the National Gallery of Canada, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA). A prolific and imaginative artist, he simultaneously used various techniques such as painting, drawing, print, collage and assembly to create multiple-style artworks that reflected his passion for colour. '' ?What I hate, I draw with love. Love of detail, love of the monster, love of totemic ferociousness and love of ugliness. Yet the significance of many of these escapes me.? (1965) Throughout his career, Harold Town received a number of commissions for public works of art, namely the mural for the Robert H. Saunders generating station of Ontario Hydro in Cornwall, on the St. Lawrence Seaway. He represented Canada at the Venice Biennial (1956 and 1964) as well as at the S?o Paolo Biennial (1957 and 1961). He also participated in various exhibitions in Canada, the United States, Europe, South America and Japan. Among his awards and recognitions are the Arno prize (S?o Paulo Biennial in 1957), his honorary doctorate from York University in 1966, his appointment as Officer of the Order of Canada in 1968, and as member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts.

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