Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven

Last week, an Irish author/blogger I follow named Jean Reinhardt reblogged a lovely piece about outdoor wall murals in Waterford, Ireland.   Originally posted here by Inese M., these are absolutely beautiful photos of wall murals by some very talented people.

It inspired me to share some of the photos I took in Ontario, in Canada’s cottage country: Muskoka.  To be more specific, I took these photos in Huntsville, Ontario just over three years ago.  Huntsville is a small town (less than 20,000) surrounded by the kind of countryside that inspired artist Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven painters who admired his work and created truly Canadian paintings which conveyed our beautiful, rugged environment to the world.

In Huntsville, as well as in eight other locations, there is a walking tour people can take to view more than 90 replicas of magnificent Group of Seven and Tom Thomson paintings reproduced by some of our finest artists.  The murals are being done over a period of 5 years (they were begun in 2012), to culminate in 2017 with the 100th anniversary of Tom Thomson’s death.

The tour begins in front of the Algonquin Theatre where sits a bronze statue of Tom Thomson by local artist Brenda Wainman-Goulet.


Nearby, on the south side of the Huntsville Civic Centre, facing the High Street parking lot, is a reproduction of Thomson’s White Birch Grove.


Just along side the local drugstore is this beautiful stream surrounded by our vibrant fall colours.  It’s called The Red Maple by A.Y. Jackson.


Going along Centre St. S. one comes to “The Canoe” by Tom Thomson.


Moving along Main St., we find J.E.H. MacDonald’s The Tangled Garden.


Further along, we come to a reproduction of Tom Thomson’s Autumn Garland.


And I love this one that’s painted on the outside of some kind of electrical or cable connection box.  Unfortunately, I can’t locate the name of the painting or the artist online and my notes are gone.


Here’s one in progress.


I’m thinking I’ll have to take a trip back to Huntsville to see all the latest additions.  I don’t think I’ll want to wait until 2017 for the celebration.

About mysm2000

Having taught elementary school for more than 25 years and been involved in many amazing technology and curriculum projects, I find I've developed a myriad of interests based on literature I've read and music I've heard. I've followed The Wright Three to Chicago, Ansel Adams to Colorado, The Kon Tiki Expedition to Easter Island, Simon & Garfunkel lyrics to New York City, Frank Lloyd Wright to Fallingwater, Pennsylvania, and have only just begun.
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14 Responses to Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven

  1. The murals are stunning. I’ve always longed to visit Canda, being a family of six though the cost of travel does discourage the notion. Thanks for sharing these!

  2. Cathy says:

    Great images. What a fantastic place to live.

  3. Candid Cover says:

    I live in Ontario and my family vacations in Huntsville frequently. The area and the Group of Seven murals are absolutely stunning. Your post is such a wonderful tribute to the region! <3

    • mysm2000 says:

      Thank you. I’m originally from southwestern Ontario and we used to go there quite often as well. I loved the murals and do intend to go back and see the latest ones. Thanks for leaving your comment.

  4. inesephoto says:

    These works are truly amazing. It is what we want to see around us – beauty of art and generosity of those who share it.

    • mysm2000 says:

      Thanks. I’m a big fan of Group of Seven and, especially Tom Thomson so I really am going to go back this summer and see what’s been added. I loved your photos of the Waterford murals. It’s great that they’ll be preserved that way long after the weather has taken its toll on the paper. I appreciate you stopping by and your kind remarks.

  5. I will have to go into Cork city and take some photos of the street art there. I’ve seen it on facebook and it’s really good. Thanks for sharing yours, it’s fabulous and so colourful.

    • mysm2000 says:

      If I say so myself, we have an amazingly beautiful country. I’ll look forward to see your photos from Cork.

      • About eight years ago one of my sisters flew to Canada with her husband and children to take a three week road trip across the country. They hired a motor home and looking at their videos and photographs we could see how beautiful Canada is. Some of the scenery is truly breathtaking. They thoroughly enjoyed that holiday.

        • mysm2000 says:

          You’ll have to come and visit one day as well. I was in Ireland a very long time ago. I have relatives in the north. I visited Dublin though, and stayed in a B & B, and took the ferry from Rosslare to Fishguard. Fortunately, we had a fairly gentle crossing. I’d like to come back one day. There are some interesting archaeological digs that take volunteers so it’s not beyond the realm of possibility. It’s good getting to know you a bit online. I appreciate it when you stop by and leave comments and I enjoy your blog very much.

          • We took that ferry in the past and it was a terrible crossing. I don’t get seasick so I was lucky, as some seasoned truck drivers told us it was the worse trip they’d ever had. I love dropping in to see your posts, they’re always very interesting. Thanks for the work you put into them.

  6. I haven’t been to Huntsville in several years but the Muskoka area is beautiful. Tom Thomson is one of my favourite of the Group of Seven artists as well as A. Y. Jackson. I will have to go back some day and have a look of these murals.

    • mysm2000 says:

      I’m getting rather excited thinking about what new ones will be there since I was there last. Thomson is my absolute favourite; Jackson probably 2nd. I’m also a big fan of Emily Carr who, alas, was not one of the Group although likely due to her location rather than her content or skill. Thanks for coming by.

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