Wilfrid Flood (1904–1946)

A Passion for Pictures

January 28, 2023
 - February 4, 2024

Firestone Gallery | Level 2

Born in England, Wilfrid John Flood (1904–1946) immigrated to Canada in 1924 and settled in the Ottawa region. Employed as a draughtsman and cartographer at the Department of Mines and Resources by day, Flood also maintained a prolific painting practice and contributed to the city’s vibrant arts community throughout the 1930s and 1940s. Done in oil, pencil, pastels, and watercolour (his preferred medium), Flood’s works are imbued with a sense of warmth and vitality. They capture a strong sense of the Ottawa–Gatineau region during a time of significant change.

Drawing on pieces from the Ottawa Art Gallery’s holdings of works by Flood—88 of which were acquired in 2016 as part of a large donation from Frances Flood —this exhibition presents a selection of the artist’s works from the early 1930s up to the time of his death in 1946.

This exhibition will feature four general sections: a selection of portraits the artist captured of those around him; examples of his still life work, which he used to explore formal technique; a range of landscapes and urban scenes that give viewers a glimpse of the region in the early 20th century; and a selection of work by Flood's artistic contemporaries. Two of Flood’s large oil works (The Cloister, 1937, and The Black Horse, 1945) will also be displayed, along with assorted sketches and two dry point etchings.

Curated by Meghan Ho
French Translation: Marie-Camille Lalande
Editing : Catherine Sinclair, Lucy Trew, Véronique Couillard
Designer: Sophie Nakashima
Installation: Jennifer Gilliland, Dan Austin, Ryan Forget, Rob Keefe


This exhibition was realized with the support of the City of Ottawa, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

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