Lucius O'Brien P.R.C.A.
Off Hastings, Waiting for a Wind, 1889
The Canadian Fine Arts Gallery Ltd., Toronto
Private collection, Calgary
Hastings, rendered in this O’Brien watercolour, is a seaside town in East Sussex, England. It is a major fishing port, and in the Victorian era, it became a popular seaside destination for tourists. In 1889, Lucius O’Brien attended his first one-man exhibition of works in England, comprised of Rocky Mountain scenes that he had completed during his travels on the Canada Pacific Railway (1). The works were received favorably, and for the length of the exhibition, June to November 1889, O’Brien stayed in England. Here, he found time to sketch around Sussex, Cornwall and North Devon (2), and the artist exhibited almost exclusively English subjects over the next year upon his return to Canada.
1. The Montreal Gazette, 15 August 1899, Mr. O’Brien’s Pictures Favorably Received in London, p. 2
2. Reid, Dennis, Our Own Country Canada, p. 423