PLEIN AIR CANADAIN LANDSCAPE PAINTER, GEORGE ALFRED PAGINTON April 08 2018
George Paginton (Canadian, 1901-1988) was a plein air painter who carried his paintings and supplies in a wooden painter’s box. Most of his paintings have raw edges around the canvas board, exposed bits of canvas and sometimes specs of dirt and natural debris from being painted outdoors in a single sitting. In the same manner of the Group of Seven painters, these are often referred to as sketches, however, only a few were ever reworked into larger canvases.
Often George’s work was placed wet into his wooden painter’s box and paintings were stacked together causing slight abrasions and where thicker areas of paint pressed against the box or another painting may have caused minor flattening of the peaks. Because of painting outdoors, the backs of many paintings show watermarks, stains and/or paint splotches.
For this artist, none of these would be considered condition issues but all part of the artist’s rugged and truthful style and part of his technique of single-sitting plein air painting.
Often the back of the paintings have old sticker marks or brown paper pieces glued on. His son, Tony Paginton, affixed brown paper labels with handwritten notes about when the painting was first photographed; this occurred in the mid-1960s. After the artist’s death, Tony numbered each painting and catalogued them. These numbers on the verso are the inventory numbers and are seen on almost all the works.
On occasion the artist recorded the location and date of the painting on the verso, and sometimes the artist’s son, at a later date, wrote the region on the backs. On early works, the artist also recorded a price, although few were ever exhibited for sale.
"Typical Northern Ontario" circa 1930, oil on canvas board, 8.5 x 10.5 inches
Because most of the paintings were never exhibited, framed or viewed in any way, on some of the works there may be some areas of paint loss and abrasions, cracking in the paint and splitting in wood panel boards from being stored stacked together, some for over 65 years. However, most are in excellent to very good condition.
As the artist was an illustrator for the Toronto Star, there are drawings and other works on paper that may have been created as part of his work at the newspaper but also as part of his personal oeuvre; some are included in the catalogue and others not.
The artist signed some of his work but largely not at all. After his death and when his work began to be represented by Odon Wagner Gallery in 1999, a stamp with the artist’s initials “GP” in a circular outline, both in red ink, was created and placed on some of the works in the lower left or right corner. Before George passed away, he signed some of the works on the verso.
"The East Shore" circa 1948, oil on canvas, 20 x 25 inches
Each painting and drawing listed in the catalogue has been given an inventory number and issued a Certificate of Authenticity signed by the artist’s son, Tony Paginton. There are some works that were sold during the artist’s life or shortly after the artist’s death that are not included in the catalogue and they may or may not be signed or stamped, nor will they have a Certificate of Authenticity (the number of paintings is unknown).
Wall Fiction is pleased to work with Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp to feature George's paintings for sale.