Artwork by George Franklin Arbuckle,  Seascape (Inspired by “The White and the Gold”)

Franklin Arbuckle
Seascape (Inspired by “The White and the Gold”)

oil on canvas
signed lower right; note on the artwork’s presentation for MacLean’s 1955 essay writing contest on the reverse (two photographs of artwork’s presentation affixed to the reverse of the canvas and accompany this lot)
21 x 18 ins ( 53.3 x 45.7 cms )

Auction Estimate: $2,000.00$1,500.00 - $2,000.00

Price Realized $1,416.00
Sale date: April 14th 2020

Merle E. Boner, Manitoba
Private Collection, Winnipeg
Merle E. Boner won the MacLeans essay contest 1955. The topic of the essay that the painting is based on is the 1954 Thomas B. Constains novel "The White and The Gold"

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George Franklin Arbuckle
(1909 - 2001) RCA

Arbuckle studied at the Ontario College of Art under J.W. Beatty and J.E.H. MacDonald. He attended summer classes at Franz Johnston's Georgian Bay art school. During the war, he turned his hand to commercial work and became an extremely successful illustrator. He worked for Bomac Engravers for several years at Ottawa and Montreal but he returned to free lance work in 1944. His special knowledge of historical subjects contributed greatly to his stature as an illustrator. Much of this knowledge was obtained from a friend and teacher, C. W. Jeffreys. His fine art painting encompassed both realism and impressionism.

His MacLean’s cover paintings of people, reveal his sensitivity to facial expressions striking a happy medium between caricature and realism. One of his particularly successful illustrations for MacLean’s magazine covered two pages used for Joseph Schull’s “William Lawrence and his wonderful windjammer.” This large illustration of a ship was reproduced in Canadian Art magazine in connection with the 7th Annual Exhibition of Advertising and Editorial Art; other works by him also appeared in that issue. Two of his larger projects have been written about in Weekend magazine. He has won the Jessie Dow award twice and is regarded as one of the more prominent illustrators in Canada.

His love of outdoor painting was rarely satisfied due to his numerous commitments of other types of art work. His more important commissions include: a mural 32 ft., 10 inches by 17 ft. for the City Hall at Hamilton, Ontario; mural for the Sawinigan Water and Power Company, Quebec; the design for tapestries 30 ft. by 19 ft. each, for the Royal Bank of Canada Building on King Street, Toronto. The tapestries were woven at Aubusson, France. Barbara Moon’s article in MacLean’s magazine in 1959 covered many aspects of his life and that of his artist wife Frances-Anne Johnston, daughter of founding Group of Seven member Frank Johnston.

Franklin Arbuckle is represented in the International Business Machines Collection of Contemporary Art, the Seagram Collection of Paintings and the R.C.A. Diploma Collection in the National Gallery of Canada. He is also represented in other leading galleries in North America and Europe. He taught at the Ontario College of Art and continued his career as a free lance artist. He was a member of the Ontario Society of Artists and the Canadian Society of Book Illustrators. He became an associate member of the Royal Canadian Academy in 1936, and a full member in 1945. He served as president of the RCA from 1960 to 1964.

Source: "A Dictionary of Canadian Artists, Volume I: A-F", compiled by Colin S. MacDonald, Canadian Paperbacks Publishing Ltd, Ottawa, 1977