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Ut pictura poesis : Edward Black Greenshields' Collection of Hague School paintings

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Ut pictura poesis : Edward Black Greenshields' Collection of Hague School paintings

Buis, Alena M (2008) Ut pictura poesis : Edward Black Greenshields' Collection of Hague School paintings. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

According to Edward Black Greenshields (1850-1917), the Hague School of artists were "all men of striking originality, [who] broke away from past traditions of art in their country, and, going directly to nature, strove, by careful study, to give a truthful view, each as he saw it..." 1 Financed by the industrial development of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, he and the rest of Montreal's "merchant princes," formed a new class of art collectors rapidly purchasing European paintings. Greenshields, a noted industrialist and amateur scholar orchestrated the largest and most concentrated private amassing of "modern" Dutch works. Although he was one of the most important collectors of his time, little has been written about his activity in the Montreal art milieu. This paper investigates the nature of Greenshields' engagement with the Hague School and how as a collector and promoter of the group's work, he influenced the group's reception in Canada. At the height of his collecting Greenshields published two texts, A Subjective View of Landscape Painting (1904) and Landscape Painting and Modern Dutch Artists (1906). Combining art history and art criticism these works are now considered among the first of their kind produced in Canada. In this thesis I argue that Greenshields' collection and theoretical views on art as expressed in his writing evolved simultaneously and as his taste for works by the Hague School was formed his collection assumed a rhetorical function. By examining the mechanics of Greenshields' collection I provide a critical inquiry into connoisseurship during the formative stages of collecting in Canada. 1 E.B. Greenshields, The Subjective View of Landscape Painting: With Special Reference to J.H. Weissenbruch and Illustrations from His Works in Canada. (Montreal: Desbarats, 1903) 9.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Art History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Buis, Alena M
Pagination:ix, 154 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Art History
Date:2008
Thesis Supervisor(s):MacKenzie, Catherine
ID Code:976098
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:19
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:41
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