Gatineau Madonna, 1940
Swiss, Canadian, 1896
tempera on masonite
92 x 107.4 cm
National Gallery of Canada (no. 4610)
Let the artist be in contact with life around him, his feet on the ground. Then, when the wind of international ideas blows, it will only freshen and sharpen his original creative power . . . Today the artist is returning to the study of life, people working, the crowds of city streets, the social aspect which is so much of our time . . . The importance of the Mexican contribution . . . [consists] in . . . the revival of mural painting, . . . whose existence . . . has set up, in the minds of the public, the idea that the artist can, and should, function as a normally necessary member of national life.
André Biéler, address at the Conference on Canadian-American Affairs, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, 14'18 June 1937