Townships landscape on exhibit at Colby-Curtis
The Colby-Curtis Museum held a vernissage last Friday, which was attended by almost one hundred enthusiastic patrons, for two new exhibitions that put the spotlight on the beautiful Eastern Townships landscape and how it has evolved. The exhibit located in the “Doctor’s Office” is named The Lay of the Land – Surveying the landscape in Stanstead County and explores through old maps, surveyors and mapmakers tools, documents and artefacts dating back to the 1800’s how the land around the Memphremagog area has transformed. “It’s interesting to see the evolution in the maps. For centuries they knew how to measure the latitudes, but it wasn’t until the chronometer was invented that they could measure the longitudes,” explained museum curator, Pierre Rastoul, referring to a seemingly distorted map on display. Several interesting tools once belonging to Joseph Bouchette, who measured the disputed Canadian/American border line along with Jesse Pennoyer, are part of the
exhibit. “The Treaty of Washington is based on Joseph Bouchette’s surveys in 1842,” added Mr. Rastoul.
Occupying three rooms on the top floor of Carrollcroft is an exhibit that will delight art lovers as much as history buffs. Visions – Painters & Landscapes in
the Eastern Townships brings together the landscape images of almost forty artists from the 18th, 19th and the 20th centuries, such as those of Willbur Aaron Reaser, William Stuart Hunter Senior and Junior, Frank Henry Shapleigh and Joseph Bouchette, and includes several paintings of Townships scenery by contemporary artists Catherine Bates, Virginia Cope and Jennifer Brook. “It’s a really nice variety of work from many different artists,” mentioned Mr. Rastoul.
Many of the paintings are on loan from other museums, art galleries and from private collections, such as a beautiful pair of paintings by Cornélius Kreighoff. However, much of the artwork comes from the ColbyCurtis’ own extensive collection of locally created art. “We found this painting by an unknown artist under a pile of cardboard; it had been lost in oblivion!” said
Museum curator and director Pierre Rastoul poses with a large work by Frank Henry Shapleigh, smaller paintings by William Stuart Hunter Sr. and prints by William Stuart Hunter Jr.