A.Y. Jackson R.C.A.

April Afternoon, Les Eboulements, Quebec, April 1931

oil on board
8.5x10.5 in.

Inscribed to verso:
A.Y. Jackson / 6282 Terrebone Ave / Montreal;
Les Eboulements Que. / April 1931

Peter Ohler Sr., Vancouver;
Masters Gallery Ltd., Calgary;
Private collection, Tennessee

Canadian National Exhibition, Department of Small Pictures, Toronto, 1931, cat. no. 660;
Art Gallery of Ontario, label to verso

By way of routine, A.Y. Jackson made a late spring trip to lower Quebec to his favourite sketching grounds every year. 1931 found him at Les Eboulements, and he would have been 49 the
year this work was painted. Les Eboulements – the landslides – is a region named for geographic features resulting from a 1663 earthquake that shook Charlevoix. It is one of the most picturesque
regions of Canada, and having caught the eye of artists for generations, it was a particular favourite of Jackson’s.

Here, Jackson has painted the houses and barns as if they are asleep, blanketed in deep blue, white and brown, the sun low in the sky. Everything casts a liquid shadow on the knee-deep snow,
including the lone figure trudging down the road, having just passed a wayside cross. Jackson’s limited palette of white, brown, blue, and green is accented by a spot of orange in the cap of the figure,
orange that melts into the figure’s scarf, also caught in shadow.

“Seldom was there found a subject all composed and waiting to be painted; out of a confusion of motives the vital one had to be determined upon. Sketching here demanded a quick decision in composition, an ignoring or summarizing of much of the detail, a searching-out of significant form, and…