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 Dorothy Marie (Johnson) Oxborough  (1922 - )



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Lived/Active: British Columbia/Nova Scotia/Alberta / Canada      Known for: child portrait painting of Indians and Eskimos, animals and fishing

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Ad Code: 4
AskART Artist
from Auction House Records.
Untitled - Papoose
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Dorothy Marie Oxborough NSSA, FCA, PSA, CIPA (1922)

A well-known Canadian painter, Dorothy Oxborough (AKA: Mrs. H. Johnson) was born in Calgary, Alberta and grew up in Banff, Alberta. She has lived in Ottawa, Ontario (1955 – 1957 and 1967 – 1973); Halifax, Nova Scotia (1957 – 1967); and her home since 1973 has been the environs of Victoria, British Columbia. Her ubiquitous sentimental portraits of Native children are often seen reproduced as decorative prints, framed souvenirs, greeting cards, novelties, and calendars.

Oxborough’s primary medium is soft pastel* and her primary subjects are portraits of Indian and Eskimo (Inuit) children; however she has done portraits of adults, fishermen, dogs, cats and horses. Her style is Realism*.

Her art education includes life classes at the Vancouver School of Art (now – Emily Carr University of Art + Design), Vancouver, B.C. and studies in anatomy at the Provincial Institute of Technology and Arts (now – Alberta College of Art & Design), Calgary (1938 – 1941). While growing up, her acquaintances and influences included some of the legends in western Canadian art such as Walter J. Phillips, Henry George Glyde, Roland Gissing, Peter Whyte, Catharine Whyte, and Nicholas de Grandmaison. Oxborough’s associates as an adult in British Columbia included Harry Heine, Leonard Gibbs and Sid Barron (all artists mentioned have their own AskART pages).

Oxborough has been a member of the Nova Scotia Society of Artists (Treasurer 1964 – 1965, Secretary 1966 – 1967), the Maritime Art Association*, the Federation of Canadian Artists*, the Pastel Society of Canada*, and the Canadian Institute of Portrait Artists*.

She exhibited with the Nova Scotia Society of Artists* from 1958 to 1972, with the Maritime Art Association from 1962 to 1967, and with the Federation of Canadian Artists* (Victoria and Vancouver) from 1979 to 1996. She has exhibited at Painters at Painter's* (Campbell River) from it’s founding in 1994 to 2011 and she is on its schedule for 2012.  Her works were included in the first exhibition of Nova Scotia Artists in London, England (1965) and the B.C. Government "Fifteen-man Travelling Show", which was exhibited in Canada, Great Britain and Europe (1979). She has also shown her paintings in commercial galleries such as Winchester Galleries, Oak Bay, B.C.; Great West Art Gallery, Chemainus, B.C.; and Leaf Hill Galleries, Victoria, B.C.

Oxborough’s works are traded on the Canadian auction market, they are in numerous private collections, and there are examples of it in a few Canadian museum collections.

According to the Canadian Heritage Information Network* and individual museum websites, there are Oxborough works in the permanent collections of The Maltwood Gallery (University of Victoria, B.C.), the Nova Scotia Museum (Halifax), and the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies (Banff, Alberta).

Oxborough’s numerous awards and honors include the Gold medal for "Buckskin and Lace", Federation of Canadian Artists Vancouver (1996); the designation of Premier Pastellist by the Pastel Society of Canada; and she is an Honorary Lifetime Member of the Federation of Canadian Artists.
Biographical Index of Artists in Canada (2003), by Evelyn de Rostaing McMann (see AskART book references)

The Collector's Dictionary of Canadian Artists at Auction (2001), by Anthony R. Westbridge and Diana L. Bodnar (see AskART book references)

A Dictionary of Canadian Artists (1974), by Colin S. MacDonald (see AskART book references)

Robert Amos - Victoria Times Colonist, article Saturday, April 23, 2011
Oxborough Art (website)

Painters at Painter's, Painter’s Lodge, Campbell River, B.C. (website)

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see Glossary

Prepared and contributed by M.D. Silverbrooke.

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at
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