Prudence Heward

Near Cowansville, Quebec, 1944

oil on panel
12x14 in.
$27,500 Cdn.

Continental Galleries, Montreal;
Private collection, Montreal;
Sale of Sothebys, Important Canadian Art, Toronto, May 19, 1993, lot 282;
Private collection, Calgary;
Masters Gallery, Calgary;
Private collection, Edmonton

Prudence Heward took multiple trips throughout rural Quebec over the course of her career, where she produced plein air panel sketches of the landscape. The early 40s were a challenging time for Heward, who suffered life-long health afflictions made worse by a 1939 accident, and then lost her sister in 1943 – this all throughout the societal turmoil of the Second World War. The artist struggled through her personal challenges, and despite them she continued to produce work (the countryside was also likely a welcome escape). Cowansville, Quebec remains an important cultural hub for the Beaver Hall artists and their contemporaries. Lillias Torrence Newton lived there near the end of her life, as did much of Heward’s extended family. To this day, the Musée Bruck in Cowansville holds an impressive collection of Beaver Hall and A.Y. Jackson works.

Born Efa Prudence Heward in Montreal, Quebec, Canada into a well-to-do family, she was educated at private schools. At a young age, she showed an interest in art and, encouraged by her family, she attended the Art Association of Montreal school for training. During World War I, Heward lived in…