Artwork by Raymond John Mead,  Scented Garden

Ray Mead
Scented Garden

acrylic on canvas
signed and dated 1987 on the reverse; titled on the stretcher bar
51.75 x 67 ins ( 131.4 x 170.2 cms )

Auction Estimate: $12,000.00$8,000.00 - $12,000.00

Price Realized $10,030.00
Sale date: May 28th 2019

Waddington & Gorce Inc., Montreal
Private Collection, Calgary
Mount Royal University, Calgary
Iris Nowell, Painters Eleven: The Wild Ones of Canadian Art, Vancouver/ Toronto, 2010, pages 234-35
A work from the artist’s mature period, “Scented Garden” is an energetic, whimsical painting, recalling images of wild fragrant gardens. The bright palette and spontaneous application of of the acrylic paints evokes a lively energy radiating from the canvas and exemplifies Mead’s devotion to colour experience and exploration.

During an interview with Joan Murray, Mead expresses his feelings on colour, explaining:
“I love orange, that’s the symbol of light. All shades of orange, from the yellowy orange that the Japanese use in their prints to the reddy oranges, the lovely chemical oranges we use today, but it has a certain vitality. Actually, though, as a basic colour to work with, I do not like yellow much because I find that If you want to take a yellow down in tone it becomes a brown, but if I take a blue I can go from the lightest sort of spring sky blue to an almost black and it is still a blue. In other words, the blue has this beautiful tonal range like the lavenders and purples.”

Iris Norwell writes that “many experts consider Mead’s late work his most successful, achieved on the strength of his Painters Eleven period. At that time his colours and forms began to exert their power, and would flourish in his works in the 1980s and ‘90s. His large canvases are noted for his signature black and white shapes with discreet colour highlights...The shapes and forms on his canvases—zigzagging blocks, small blots and squiggles, assertive arrows, crescents and arches—are rendered in lively hues.”

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Raymond John Mead
(1921 - 1998) Painters Eleven