Harold Klunder, Lethbridge # 2

Lethbridge # 2 by Canadian artist Harold Klunder

Harold Klunder, Lethbridge # 2, 1998, watercolour on paper, 50.8 x 38 cm. Collection of the MacLaren Art Centre. Gift of John F. (Jack) Petch, 2003.

Harold Klunder
Lethbridge # 2, 1998
watercolour on paper
50.8 x 38 cm
Collection of the MacLaren Art Centre
Gift of John F. (Jack) Petch, 2003

Harold Klunder is a senior Canadian artist who primarily works in painting. Since the early 1970s, he has maintained a substantial oil and acrylic painting practice, one that often overshadows an equally mature and growing body of watercolours. Made with spontaneous and instinctive gestures, Klunder’s watercolours come together quickly and act as respite from his works on canvas, which can take years to realize.

In the fall of 1997 and spring of 1998, Klunder created a suite of watercolours while teaching at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta. In these intimate works, rich pigments are laid down in soft pools and harder shapes, creating expressionistic environments. The central blue outline in Lethbridge # 2 floats among ochre, red and mossy-coloured passages, like a haloed moon beaming through the woods. The diffuse shapes invite unique and personal interpretations from each person who cares to look and find meaning. This permission to find singular meaning keeps the work reflective of the times, and may explain why this series—created over two decades ago—continues to feel fresh today.

Harold Klunder was born in the Netherlands in 1943 and emigrated to Canada with his family in 1952, where he later attended Toronto’s Central Technical School, studying under artists Doris McCarthy, Charles Goldhamer and Virginia Luz. Klunder has exhibited regularly for more than four decades, and his work is held in significant private and public collections nationwide, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Musee d’art contemporain de Montréal. Klunder lives and works in Montréal, Quebec; he also maintains studios in Flesherton, Ontario, Pouch Cove, Newfoundland and Berlin, Germany.