London Art Gallery features works of Angus Trudeau

The late Angus Trudeau’s works were featured in a July exhibit at the London Art Gallery.

LONDON, ONTARIO—Wiikwemkoong artist Angus Trudeau’s (who passed away in 1984) paintings are being featured at a London, Ontario art gallery exhibition this month.

“Michael Gibson always admired Angus Trudeau’s work,” Jennie Kraehling, the Michael Gibson Gallery associate director told The Expositor. “We were approached by a family who knew of Mr. Trudeau’s work in the 1980 and 1990s. The family used to buy his ‘idiosyncratic and joyful paintings’ and provided him with art supplies so that he could paint.” However, “they are now downsizing their art collection and they approached us about whether we would like to feature some of Mr. Trudeau’s paintings.”

“The paintings we received highlight many different subjects, such as boats, one of a church and the town of Little Current,” said Ms. Kraehling. “We have six in total that we have on loan for the summer.”

Ms. Kraehling explained the art gallery organized its July exhibit to highlight and feature Mr. Trudeau’s unique vision. His art also tells the story of his life spent on Manitoulin Island.

Mr. Trudeau, who passed away in 1984, was a self-taught Anishinaabe artist who painted the ferries, lake freighters, logging camps and small community villages in and around Manitoulin. He worked as a pulpwood cutter at lumber camps and as a cook aboard Lake Huron commercial ships.

Ms. Kraehling told The Expositor Mr. Trudeau painted from memory using newspaper clippings, pictures and postcards to create his works. He used a variety of materials, including oil and acrylic paints, felt pens, collage and tracing.

Mr. Trudeau’s paintings were first exhibited in a 1973 group show at Toronto’s Isaacs Gallery and also at several solo shows between 1976-1982. His work has been displayed at Ottawa’s National Arts Centre (in 1981), Toronto’s Koffler Gallery in 1983, and in the US. His paintings and models are in the public gallery collections of the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, McMichael Canadian Art Collection and Art Gallery of Windsor.