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 Franklin H. Carmichael  (1890 - 1945)

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Lived/Active: Ontario / Canada      Known for: landscape, town views, graphics

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Frank Carmichael was born in Orillia, Ontario. He was known as the youngest member of the original Group of Seven including other prominent Ontario artists. Carmichael worked for his father who was a carriage maker and when he wasn't working he studied at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto in 1911. He apprenticed at the Grip Engraving Co. where he earned $2.50 per week. He went on to work for the printing house of Rous and Mann where he met Thomson, Mac Donald, Lismer and Varley.

In 1913 he furthered his art studies at the Academie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Antwerp, Belgium. He returned to Canada in 1914 and shared a space with Tom Thomson in the Studio Building. He was soon included on weekend sketching trips with members of the Group of Seven while honing his painting skills. He spent much of his spare time painting the Canadian north and experimenting with new media. He started working with different materials, fashioning objects out of pewter, copper, silver, wood and ceramic. He established himself in the medium of wood engraving and he designed and illustrated books. He worked mostly in oils before 1925 but then started working in watercolor at which he excelled.

He was one of the founding members of the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour and acted as president from 1932-1934. He took a teaching position at the Ontario College of Art in 1932 leaving his career as a commercial artist behind.

Carmichael was one of the original members of the Group of Seven and has been more closely associated with Fitzgerald, Casson and Holgate who joined the group in the later years. He had many interests outside of painting including gardening, reading, music and drama. He was an amateur musician who played the cello, flute and bassoon. In 1936 his work was exhibited in a Group of Seven retrospective in Toronto. After his death in 1945 his work was exhibited in a solo retrospective show at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 1947.

Source: "Masterpieces of Canadian Art" by David Burnett

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