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A.Y. Jackson: The Life of a Landscape Painter Hardcover – Sep 21 2009

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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99 by Wayne Gretzky 99 by Wayne Gretzky

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 266 pages
  • Publisher: Dundurn (Sept. 21 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 155488392X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1554883929
  • Product Dimensions: 26.3 x 2.2 x 26.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #337,790 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


The first full-length history of a Canadian icon? So it would seem, and an elegant one that teats the painter's life and works with reverence. Unlike most biographies this one is presented in digestible segments that allow the reader's eye to flit from canvas to canvas without sacrificing the artist's life tale.

(Globe & Mail, The)

Montreal journalist Wayne Larsen gives a detailed account of the bachelor's painter's life. The text is helpfully broken up by headings and the book is beautifully illustrated with a wealth of Jackson's vibrant, now-iconic works.

(Winnipeg Free Press)

A.Y. Jackson, Life of a Landscape Painter, by Montrealer Wayne Larsen (Dundurn, 266 pages, $60), immediately takes its place among the best books about a Canadian artist. Larson has written a highly readable account of a life chock full of incidents.

(Montreal Gazette)

What emerges is a portrait of the artist as a man of grit and perseverance, hard working, humorous and down to earth.

(Literary Review of Canada, The)

... a feast for the eyes and an intimate look at Jackson's life, detailing how the maverick outdoorsman rose from an impoverished childhood to become the de facto leader of the Group of Seven.

(Elizabeth Faure The Link 2009-10-13)

Through anecdotes and excerpts from Jackson’s writings, Larsen portrays the public man as good-humoured and outgoing but the private man remains opaque. (Canada’s History magazine)

Alexander Young Jackson (1882-1974) is a name that instantly conjures up images of our rugged northern landscape and the controversial Group of Seven. This is the first-ever full-length biography of one of Canada's most beloved characters, and the first to examine in one book the artist, outdoorsman, soldier, teacher, debater, writer, and outspoken defender of modern art.

Jackson spent nearly seventy years travelling Canada on a lifelong quest to, rendering his impressions of its diverse character on canvas and promoting a vibrant, uniquely Canadian style of painting. From southern Alberta to Ellesmere Island, from Newfoundland to Northern British Columbia, he covered more ground than any other artist – scoffing at harsh weather and hostile criticism along the way.

A.Y. Jackson takes readers on a journey through Jackson's struggles and triumphs, from his childhood in Victorian-era Montreal through his final years as a living legend of Canadian art who thought nothing of camping in a tent on Baffin Island at age 82.

About the Author

Wayne Larsen is a landscape artist, newspaper editor, and columnist who frequently lectures on A.Y. Jackson and the Group of Seven at educational and cultural institutions. He is currently editor-in-chief of the Westmount Examiner and part-time professor of Journalism at Concordia University in Montreal.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When I first saw this book I thought, "Great, maybe someone has finally done an A.Y. Jackson book that does him justice". So far no one has given us a definitive biography with lots of high quality color reproductions of his best paintings. Wayne Larsen has definitely written the definitive biography---but when it comes to the quality of the pictures---sorry folks, this book is a big disappointment. In this day of digital color photography and printing, this should have been the main priority in a major art book about a Canadian art pioneer. I've seen some really high quality Group of Seven/Tom Thomson etc. editions (David Silcox book gets 5 stars) where this was properly done--- so why on earth would the author and publisher not make the same effort for this book? Frankly, the color reproduction quality is inexcusably second-rate. There are far too few paintings as well, when there should be twice as many. There are a number of really excellent Jacksons in museums and private collections that should have been included. For anyone who wants to learn about Jackson's art---look elsewhere, as I said above, David Silcox' book is infinitely better. Silcox has lots of really fine Jacksons reproduced in high quality color. If you only want to know the details of Jackson's personal life, then that's all this book is really good for. It could have been so much better. Three stars.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not Great April 10 2011
By John Berry - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book. It has much interesting things concerning the life of Mr. Jackson, and gives a good chronology as well. The only downfall as I see it, is the lack of good images and some of the reproductions are poor. Someone (any art authors or Group of 7 lovers) needs to do a coffee table type book on A.Y.'s work. I'd buy one.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Canadian Icon Feb. 14 2010
By Robert McNally - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not just an art book on a great Canadian artist. It is a very interesting read. The author chronicles Jackson's life, the development and evolution of his art, his style and his relationship with and on the Group of Seven. It is both entertaining and educational. I was pleasantly surprised.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful artwork! Oct. 21 2011
By Tailgater - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I have always loved A.Y Jackson and his artwork. 'Red Maple' is my favorite piece from his collection. I recently bought one, had it framed and it is now in my family room above my couch. I love it.