Thursday, June 2, 2011

Harvey's Haulout

On Wednesday I visited John Bleumortier in Fredericton to borrow my painting "Perseverance" to exhibit in the Grand Manan Art Gallery in my show there from June 4 to 14. He kindly loaned me the painting for the show. But while I was there, he took me into another room and showed me a painting I had done many years ago. As soon as I saw it, I remembered it, but quite frankly had totally forgotten about it until I saw it.

Harvey Bleumortier, John's father, had a boat repair business in Seal Cove. Boats needing attention would be maneuvered into a cradle which was winched up greased ways. I did this painting for Harvey and Queenie Bleumortier in 1966:

 As I looked at it again, I realized that I had a freshness and spontaneity to my painting back then which I may have lost to a certain extent in seeking to achieve technical correctness in rendering water. This was painted in oil on canvasboard.

Some of us who are a little older may remember Harvey. He used to stand, braced back, with hands on his hips, as the man on the right in the painting, which I think was fairly intentionally intended to be Harvey. John tells me that in the painting we have Harvey Bleumortier, his dad, talking with Russ Harvey, who was Harvey's partner in the business.

 Whether or not I intended the other man to be Russ Harvey, I cannot remember, but I well may have, and John is convinced that it is. As far as the boat is concerned, I cannot recall which boat it may have been, but by its colour, I might guess that it was a boat owned by Ed Thomas. Anyway, it was a pleasant surprise to see this painting again after all these years.

And you can be sure that I am certainly going to include it with the others in my show at the Grand Manan Art Gallery, which opens on June 4, with opening reception from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.

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