The Joyous World of Overlooked Canadian Folk Artist Maud Lewis
Referred to as a folk art, Maud Lewis’s paintings are irrepressibly joyful and depict her surroundings with humor and affection. Created in bright, solid colors with a flattened picture plane and limited use of perspective, Lewis's paintings charm viewers with such subjects as winter landscapes with sleighs, deer in forest, oxen and her three wide eyed, black cats. Here Lewis has depicted two oxen, festooned in bells and chain and yoked together. Placed centrally in this intimate painting, the animals are framed by green pines on a white wintry ground with a strip of light blue sky above. Four legs are showing for each animal. This work is matted, framed and without glass. Maudie, a film based on the life of Maud Lewis was released in the spring of 2017. Starring Ethan Hawke and Sally Hawkins, it captures the essence of her constrained life, and the paintings that allowed her imagination to escape its confines.