Monday, January 4, 2016


As I am writing this there is a bright blue sunny sky and it’s cold out. But let’s face it, the last two months in Guelph have been pretty grey and gloomy. That’s why if you see Painted Land your spirits will be lifted and your hearts warmed. In this documentary, back by popular request, outdoor lovers Joanie and Gary McGuffin, along with art historian Michael Burtch go in search of the exact location where many Group of Seven artists painted some of their stunning landscapes. Archival footage, photographs and voice over from letters are sewn in so expertly you feel you are in history. 

Such a joy to see Lawren Harris, JEH Macdonald, AY Jackson, Frank Johnston, Arthur Lismer, Frank Carmichael and AJ Casson travel the box car to Algoma. The real scenery is so beautiful and it’s incredibly exciting when the art lovers actually find the exact spot where the scene for each painting has been been taken in and recreated on canvas. But here’s what amazed me: a full bright screen with a Tom Thomson painting is so inordinately beautiful that you will understand why art is so important! Yes, nature is spectacular but sometimes art takes every bit of its beauty and intensifies it.

Painted Land is back for a second run beginning Saturday January 9 at 2 p.m.

- Barb

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