[Montreal: R. & C. Chalmers, 1848]. Lithograph, 15 x 20 inches (visible portion). Closely trimmed and laid down on paper. Four minute closed tears in border, two of which affect image. Very good. Matted and framed. Item #WRCAM32676
A fine lithograph of an Indian scene in lower Canada, after an original painting by Cornelius Krieghoff of Montreal. Originally produced as part of a series of four lithographs called SCENES IN CANADA, the work as a whole is of the greatest rarity, and individual images are themselves very rare. The present image is the only one of the four focusing on Indian life, and is evocative and filled with ethnographic details. The illustration shows a three-quarter view of an Indian man sitting on a log near a body of water. He wears a round black hat and carries a herringbone paddle. A large birch bark canoe in the left foreground is shown nearly out of the water. He is speaking with a standing Indian man and seated Indian woman. The standing man holds a long rifle and wears a finely crafted jacket. The woman, looking away from the seated man, is covered under a blanket, holds a beaded bag, and wears beaded moccasins, and three tents are shown in the background. An Indian family gathers around a fire in front of one of the tents. Cornelius Krieghoff (1815-72) was born in Düsseldorf and studied art in Rotterdam. He came to the United States in 1837, where he served in the U.S. Army against the Seminole Indians in Florida. Krieghoff's skills as a topographical artist won him notice, and in the 1840s he moved to Canada. He spent the rest of his career painting the landscapes and peoples of Canada, and was particularly interested in depicting the French Canadians of Quebec province and local Indian tribes. Spendlove says that Krieghoff "was the inheritor of a long tradition in Dutch painting. One might say that he had brought to French Canada everything that the Dutch painters could contribute for the effective and sympathetic delineation of the life of the country and people; seeing with friendly interest and without bias, and recording with talent and precision." The lithograph of INDIAN WIGWAM IN LOWER CANADA was executed by Andreas Borum of Munich and printed by Th. Kammerer for publisher R. & C. Chalmers of Montreal. Marius Barbeau, CORNELIUS KRIEGHOFF: PIONEER PAINTER OF NORTH AMERICA, p.126. SPENDLOVE, pp.73-76.