OTD: Lawren Harris painting breaks auction record

On today’s date in 1981, Canadian artist Lawren Harris’ South Shore, Baffin Island sold for $240,000—then a record for a Canadian painting.

At the time, it was the most valuable painting to ever cross the auction block in Canada.

More recently, in 2001, South Shore, Baffin Island sold for a new record of $2.2 million.

Born on Oct. 23, 1885, Harris was a Canadian painter born in Brantford, Ont. He became one of the best-known landscape painters of the Group of Seven, a group of artists who set out to create a distinctly Canadian art, in which he pioneered a distinctly Canadian painting style in the early 20th century.

Another Harris painting was commemorated on this 43-cent stamp issued by Canada Post in 1995.

Another Harris painting was commemorated on a 43-cent stamp issued by Canada Post in 1995.

Harris later died on Jan. 29, 1970.

A 15-cent stamp commemorating another one of Harris’ paintings – Bylot Island – was issued by Canada’s Post Office Department in 1969.

HARRIS STAMPS

In 1969, Canada’s Post Office Department (known as Canada Post since 1981) commemorated another Harris painting, Bylot Island, on a 15-cent stamp (Scott #463).

Printed by the Canadian Bank Note Company, the dull purple stamp has 12 perforations and Winnipeg two-bar tagging.

In 1995, Canada Post again commemorated Harris’ work – this a painting called From the North Shore, Lake Superior – on a 43-cent stamp (SC #1559).

Printed by the Canadian Bank Note Company on fluorescent coated paper, which was used instead of tagging, the stamp has 13.5 perforations.

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