| Lillian Irene Hoffar Reid is primarily known as Irene Hoffar Reid
Ad Code: 4
Plants on the Terrace, 26" x 34", oil on canvas, signed and titled on verso
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
|This biography from the Archives of AskART:|
|Irene Hoffar Reid (Aka: Lillian Irene Hoffar Reid; AKA: Lillian
Irene Hoffar) was a painter, graphic artist, printmaker and
educator. She was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada;
lived in West Vancouver, B.C. (1936 – 1978); and died in Sidney, B.C.
where she had lived since 1978.|
Her mediums include oil, watercolour, pastel, graphite, monoprint and
mixed mediums. Her subjects are portraits, figures, landscape,
urban scenes, harbour scenes, still life, shorelines, beaches, fishing
scenes, genre and gardens. Her styles are Post Impressionism,
Expressionism and Fauvism. Her work is much influenced by the
Group of Seven (see AskART glossary). Quote: “In 1928 … I saw a large
painting of a mountain by Lawren Harris and I felt I had never seen a
mountain before.” - Irene Hoffar Reid (1989).
In 1925 she was in the first class of the Vancouver School of
Decorative and Applied Arts (1). Her teachers were Charles H. Scott and
Frederick Varley (see both in AskART). In 1929 she was in the
first graduating class from that school. After an extra year of
post graduate studies at VSDAA (1930); she attended the Royal Academy
Schools of Painting and Sculpture (London, England) where she studied
under Walter Thomas Monnington (1930-31). She taught drawing and
painting at the Vancouver School of Art from 1933 to 1937 .
She was a member (1940) and President (1958 - 1960 and 1966 -1967) of
the British Columbia Society of Artists (2); a member (1959) and
President (1965) (3) of the Canadian Group of Painters (see AskART
glossary); and a founding member of the Pasovas Art Club (1930)(4) .
In addition to exhibiting regularly with the above organizations she
also exhibited in group shows at the Vancouver Art Gallery (1932, 33,
34, 37, 38, 40, 41, 50, 51, 54, 55, 56, 57, 68, 88); the National
Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (1929, 1933); the Seattle Art Museum ( 20th
Annual Exhibition of Northwest Artists - 1934 ); the Winnipeg Art
Gallery, Manitoba (1957); the Memorial University of Newfoundland, St.
John's (1974); the University of British Columbia, Vancouver (1976);
the Charles H. Scott Gallery, Emily Carr Collage of Art (1980); and the
Richmond Art Gallery, B.C. (1984).
She exhibited with the Canadian Group of Painters at the Vancouver Art
Gallery (1961); Museum London, Ontario (1962), the Art Gallery of
Hamilton, Ontario (1964) and the Charlottetown Art Gallery, P.E.I.
Her works were also included in two landmark Vancouver Art Gallery
Exhibitions, “100 Years of B.C. Art " (1958) and “Vancouver Art and
Artists 1931-1983” (1983).
She was one of the four, with Lilias Farley, Beatrice Lennie and Vera
Weatherbie, in “First Class: Four Graduates from the Vancouver School
of Decorative and Applied Arts, 1929” (1987), a touring exhibition
curated by Letia Richardson.
In 1989, Heffel Gallery (Vancouver) mounted the solo exhibition “Irene
Hoffar Reid – Commemorative Exhibition for the 60th Anniversary of the
First Graduating Class of the Vancouver School of Decorative and
Applied Arts, 1929”.
Recently, her works have been included in “F.H. Varley: Portraits into
the Light” at the Art Gallery of Alberta (Edmontion), December 2007 –
February 2008; and in “Canadian Women Modernists: The Dialogue with
Emily Carr” at the Vancouver Art Gallery, April 19 to October 19, 2008.
Her works are avidly collected. They are also in the permanent
collections of the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Art Gallery of Greater
Her awards and honours include the Beatrice Stone Award from the BCSA for her drawing The Valley,
and the Centennial Medal (1967) for Service to the Nation in the
Arts. Lillian Hoffar Park, in Saanich (near Sidney) on Vancouver
Island was named after her and her mother.
(1) The school's evolution of names : Vancouver School of Decorative
and Applied Arts (1925); Vancouver School of Art: Decorative and
Applied (1933); Vancouver School of Art (1937); Emily Carr College of
Art (1978); Emily Carr College of Art and Design (1981); Emily Carr
Institute of Art + Design (1995); and finally, Emily Carr University of
Art + Design (2008). (Source: Emily Carr University of Art + Design).
(2) Sources differ on her terms as President of the BCSA, for example: Vancouver: Art and Artists 1931 - 1983
(see Book references) and the catalogue for the 1989 Heffel show says
she was President of the BCSA from 1958 to 1960 and from 1966 to 1967;
the Westbridge and MacDonald dictionaries and most other sources say
only one term, 1965 to 1967. With the help of Cheryl Siegel,
Librarian of the Vancouver Art Gallery, we established Reid's term
dates from exhibition catalogues and historic documents. This is
an excerpt from Cheryl's findings: "As to her terms at the BCSA – the
Society fiscal years probably went from July – June. Hoffar Reid
was listed in the BCSA exhibition catalogue (spring 1958) as Vice
President and in 1959 and 1960 as President. In the catalogue for
the 1966 exhibition, she is not listed as President but was clearly
President when the Society disbanded in 1967. She chaired the
meetings and wrote the final letter that disbanded the society." -
Cheryl Siegel, August 26, 2009.
(3) Excerpt from a National Gallery of Canada Library email to the
author - “I have attached a listing of the executive members of the
Canadian Group of Painters. It seems that according to this book, Irene
Hoffar Reid was President of the association in 1965 and Vice -
President in the years of 1962, 1962/63, 1966 and 1967.” - Andrea
Koteles, National Gallery of Canada Library, August 25, 2009. The book
referred to is the catalogue for the 1993 Robert McLaughlin Gallery
(Oshawa, Ontario) exhibition, " Pilgrims in the Wilderness: The
Struggle of the Canadian Group of Painters (1933 - 1969)".
(4) Letters represent: Pioneer Art Students of the Vancouver School of Art. (Source: Heffel Gallery)
Prepared and contributed by M.D. Silverbrooke.
|** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at registrar@AskART.com.|