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Item Name: Painting
Title: Blizzardly Arrival at Rural School
Maker: Eva Dennis
Year: 1959
Country: Canadian
Materials: oil on masonite
Measurements: overall: 40.7 cm x 78 cm
ID Number: PC84.6
Legal Status: PERMANENT COLLECTION


Extended Label Info: Eva Dennis’ paintings have long been appreciated for their skillful rendering, paint handling, and attention to pictorial details that come only from lived experience. As a teacher to several rural schools in the Moose Jaw area, Dennis started painting in the 1950s, using her art as a method of recording scenes from her childhood and teaching years, as a visual memoir. This work, Blizzardly Arrival at Rural School is a visual record of a blustery day when a Mr. R. Auird of Old Wives School district brought his three girls, Mary, Louise and Beverly, to school in a barrel. Though the rural school is gone, images such as Dennis’ allow an insight into a Prairie life that is, although humorous, an example of the ingenuity and resilience required to survive the harsh winters. Eva Dennis (1904-1995) was born in Gravenhurst, Ontario and moved with her family to Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan in 1912. She went to Teacher’s College from 1926-27 and taught at several rural schools around Moose Jaw until retiring in 1965. Dennis’ work has been included in the Moose Jaw Fine Art Guild’s Annual Exhibition since 1957. She has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions across Saskatchewan, including with her husband Wesley Dennis.