Walter J. PHILLIPS
Emigrating from London to Winnipeg in 1913, Walter J. Phillips was captivated by his adopted home country of Canada. The dramatic prairies, waterscapes and mountains are ever-present in his rich yet subtle watercolors and woodblock prints. He did not shy away from evidence of humanity in his work either, including architecture and figures to enhance the narrative of the surroundings. Phillips was incredibly successful during his lifetime and created artwork and taught throughout Canada and the Northern United States. Inspired by the Japanese woodblock method, Phillips would layer transparent water-based inks to create depth and instill a dream-like quality to his work. His prints were so expertly crafted that they have a stained-glass effect to them, as if someone is holding a soft light behind the paper, illuminating the subject matter. The artist passed away in 1963 in Victoria, Canada and has been credited with popularizing the woodblock print in Canada and leaving a lasting impression on the country he loved so much.