Historic Art | Fritz Brandtner


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Victoire a L'Usine 1945

Technique: coloured ink on paper

Dimensions: 8 x 10.75 in.


On May 8, 1945 the Second World War was officially over, Germany had signed the act of military surrender. Victoire a L'Usine captures the joy and excitement of Canadian factory workers on this day.

Brandtner was passionate about freedom and social justice, making this an obvious scene for him to depict. Many of his paintings journal major political events of the twentieth century. He illustrated the terrors of war, as well as the labour of those who produced arms and ammunition.

About the Artist

Fritz Brandtner, painter (b at Danzig [Gdansk, Poland], Germany 28 July 1896; d at Montréal 7 Nov 1969). Generally considered to have introduced German expressionism to Canada, Brandtner was trained in Berlin and came to Winnipeg in 1928. He worked as a house painter until L.L. FITZGERALD, principal of the Winnipeg School of Art, encouraged him to exhibit his own experimental paintings.

In 1934 he moved to Montréal, where he found greater scope for his "modern" approach. He was associated there with John LYMAN and the CONTEMPORARY ARTS SOCIETY and later with the Canadian Group of Painters and with Marian SCOTT, with whom he taught children's art classes. A strong sense of design, exuberant colours and characteristic, slashing black diagonals marked his work in oil, watercolour graphics and linoleum, the latter used for panels for the Queen Elizabeth Hotel and Jasper Park Lodge. Murals by Brandtner are in Saskatoon and Boston.

Author ANNE MCDOUGALL - The Canadian Encyclopedia
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