John Hartman

John Hartman: Baie Fine from South La Cloche Range, 2002

Baie Fine from South La Cloche Range, 2002, pastel on paper, 31 x 59 inches

Baie Fine from South La Cloche Range

This pastel comes from a sketching trip I made with my son Joseph. We canoed in to OSA Lake, camped, and then climbed the ridges on the lake’s north shore. In this drawing you are looking west from the ridge, out through a series of small lakes to Baie Fine, and then to MacGregor Bay. The view is panoramic and the land on the left horizon is Manitoulin Island. The figure in the foreground of the centre sheet is Joseph sitting and writing while I was sketching.

The stories in the sky are all from the earlier history of the town of Killarney. In the centre sheet is an image of the Sportsman, with Peter Lowe’s face superimposed. The Lowe brothers were the local boat builders when boats were still made from wood. Peter’s brother trained in the Watt’s yard in Collingwood. He had died when I first began visiting, but Peter was still alive and would come into the Sportsman at 4 pm each day. He still maintained an immaculate boathouse beside the Sportsman, and many of the Lowe boats were still in service.

In the right sky there is a simple image of a large canoe. This is a reference to Lady Jamieson’s canoe trip with her husband, when he signed Treaty 3 with the Ojibway in the early nineteenth century. In the left sky is an image of the general store on the water in Killarney originally owned by the Jackman family. My idea with these stories is to try to connect the landscape with its history in a way that suggests that people and place are entwined.