M973.152.1 | Montreal 1810

Montreal 1810
George Heriot
About 1810, 19th century
Watercolour, ink and graphite on paper mounted on board
11.5 x 19.6 cm
Gift of Miss Alice M. S. Lighthall
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Painting (2229) , painting (2227)
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This watercolour of Montreal was almost certainly removed from George Heriot's England and Canada Sketchbook. Both this view and the sketchbook belonged at the point to a Mrs. J.C.A. Heriot. Moreover, the dimensions of the pages of the sketchbook and of this work correspond exactly, and there is a missing page in the bound sketchbook where this view of Montreal should appear. The previous pages contain watercolours depicting the artist's progress up the St. Lawrence to Quebec City, followed by a view of Cape Santé and the other view of Montreal. The date seems to have been added later, as it is in a different hand and ink form the inscribed title. Nevertheless, 1810 is a plausible date for the work given its place within the sequence of views in the sketchbook. There is no doubt as to the authorship of the watercolour, since it can be placed stylistically within the oeuvre of George Heriot. George Heriot was an accomplished watercolourist and his unique style of painting lends a marked vitality and immediacy to this work. In the view, executed from St. Helen's Island, Heriot has minimized the distance between the island and the city by bringing the center of the town into the middleground, closer to the viewer. (Excerpt from: GRAHAM, Conrad. Mont-Royal - Ville Marie : Early Plans and Views of Montreal, McCord Museum of Canadian History, p. 55.)