Murney painting adds to national celebration
The joyful sounds of fiddles and friendly conversation filled the room as the Murney Tower Museum officially opened its doors on Friday for the season, with a special sesquicentennial addition to the popular tourist attraction.
In honour of the 150th anniversary and Confederation, the Kingston Historical Society commissioned a painting created by widely recognized local aviation artist Don Connolly. The painting was publicly unveiled at the museum opening.
Connolly, 85, said his inspiration for the painting dates back to his boyhood memories and fascination with buildings.
To date, Connolly has created more than 4,000 works of art and continues to paint in his local studio near Sydenham Lake.
The Murney Tower painting took several months to complete and involved countless consultations with historical interpreters.
Director of the Kingston Historical Society, Graeme Watson, said he was “pleased to unveil the painting to the members of the Kingston Historical Society at their annual general meeting ” earlier in the year.
“This is a very special year, as Canada’s 150th. We’re very excited that there’s something very special happening at the Murney Tower and that is a very special painting that’s been created by Don Connolly,” says Kingston Mayor Brian Paterson.
The mayor and Connolly worked together to officially unveil the painting to the public.
The unveiling of the painting marked the official 92nd season opening of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Connolly pointed out that he has never worked on a painting that has been put to the same amount of demanding standard of detail as this one.
“The things you learn when you start to study something carefully are amazing,” Connolly said as he spoke about the commissioned painting that intricately showcases many components of inside the tower, as well as its relationship between the other Martello towers and the Kingston waterfront.
The painting is now being featured in much of Murney Tower’s promotional material.
“We are looking forward to having a great year welcoming visitors from across the province and across the region and beyond to Kingston,” Paterson said.
The museum features three floors of exhibits and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., until noon on Labour Day.
Local artist Don Connolly stands in front of his commissioned Murney Tower painting, which was unveiled during the official Murney Tower Museum season-opening ceremony on Friday.