Henri Léopold Masson

Henri Léopold Masson, painter (b at Spy, Belgium 10 Jan 1907; d at Ottawa 9 Feb 1996). Largely self-taught, Masson combined his narrative abilities with a fluid GROUP OF SEVEN style. He lived in Ottawa from 1921 and began exhibiting nationally in 1938 and internationally in 1946. His themes reflect his belief in the unity of nature and art. Cityscapes and landscapes reveal a sense of place and time. Still lifes and paintings of monks and choirboys, musicians, children and a great variety of commonplace activities deal with subjects that he considered to convey the essence of life. Masson used a loose, vigorous brush style in many media. His best works are full of detail and movement, with a broad range of colour, and convey a sense of immediacy to the viewer.