home shows works catalog texts misc
before ’64 1964-74 1975-87 1987-99 2000-07 paper sculpture
before ’58 enamels relief signs mandalas lines etc drawings

Before 1958
Juvenalia and Early Abstraction

In the Bloore Archives at the University of Regina is a catalog of the artworks shown at the 1951 Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto which lists a 22 x 30" watercolour by R.L.Bloore titled "Concerning A Frog." This is his earliest known public success. The catalog was not illustrated.


jpeg jpeg jpeg jpeg jpeg jpeg



c.1948, self-portrait, charcoal on paper, private collection



c.1947, family collection



c.1954, watercolour on paper, location unknown



c.1954, watercolour on paper, location unknown

And here is an image with ideas, problems and solutions strikingly similar to those in a work of many years later: this painting from 2003 which sold at the 2011 Tribute show in Calgary.

Many parallels are instantly obvious: the vertical format, the red, yellows and black, and their intensity. They are also both top heavy compositions. But the centres of the pantings are opposite, the early one white, the new one black.

click to see large

Also, while the figures in the later work are very constructed and the two fields, the white one and the black one behind that, are accumulations of brushstrokes, the early work's figures simply are brushstrokes. And so the watercolour's blacks are forward with us rather than far away back there somewhere.

In both cases the figures are with us instead of in the painting's image space. We see the banal, uninflected watercolour brushstrokes, for example, as being on the surface which we feel is in our space, as the white ground recedes back into imaginary space. The painting becomes a kind of bridge joining our space to an imaginary space and existing in both. These are baroque techniques.

Coincidentally, an analogous effect occurred in the hanging of this 2003 painting at the Wallace Gallery. It was hung in a way that it could only be viewed from outside the gallery. Three works were handicapped in this way and they all sold.




c.1954, watercolour on paper, location unknown



1954, mixed media and collage, private collection
click to see much larger

pre-1958 abstracts
series page

Top / 1958-59 Enamels →






Before ’64 Early Days
1964 to ’74 White on White
1975 to ’87 Back to Toronto
1987 to ’99 Synthesis
2000 to ’07 Anti-synthesis


Works on Paper
Small Maquettes
Black Works
Works With Colour
Sploore Sculptures


Sunday Sketches
1975-76 Sketches
Working Drawings
Oil Working Drawings

’54 TO ’64
pre-’58 abstracts
58-59 enamels
59-60 relief
60-61 signs
61-62 mandalas
62-63 white lines
60-63 others
59-63 drawings

’64 TO ’74
64-66 after Egypt
67-68 murals
67-70 after Regina
70-74 after Cape Dorset
67-74 maquettes
64-68 drawings
70-72 sploores

’75 TO ’87
75-76 byzantine lights
77-80 Sackvilles
79-83 stick relief
83-84 chasubles
80-84 stick chasubles
85-86 assemblages

78-79 Sackvilles on paper
1980 mixed media on paper
80-83 sumi ink on paper
80-81 gouaches on paper
1982 chasuble sketches
85-86 template drawings
1987 paper collages

80-83 small inkworks
80-81 large inkworks
80-83 very large inkworks
80-81 extra large inkworks

’87 TO ’99
87-88 the X's
88-90 grand diptyches
91-93 squares continue
93-94 4-by-4's continue
1994 inkworks on paper
94-97 white white gold
97-98 brushed lines
98-99 News Series I

2000 TO ’07
2000 New Series II
01-02 move to Spadina
2003 back on the horse
2004 late series begin
04-05 back to the square
05-06 an old man's style
06-07 the Yellow Series
2007 the Last Series