Peggy Smith

New Brunswick Artist

After some initial instruction with her mother and classes with Eleanor Lowe at Prince of Wales College on Prince Edward Island, Peggy Smith studied in the Fine Arts Department of Mount Allison University with Lawren P. Harris, Alex Colville and Ted Pulford. After her graduation in 1955 she moved to Toronto to pursue further education in Childhood Studies. Her fringe of the bustling art world of late-1950s Toronto. After residing in England for five years and the birth of two more children, Smith returned to Canada and eventually settled in Saint John, New Brunswick. For the next fifteen years she painted part-time while she taught school, undertook art restoration and operated a daycare. Since 1981 she has painted on a full time basis.

Smith's repertoire includes landscape, still-life and portraiture. She has a longstanding love and appreciation of music and this has resulted in a prodigious amount of individual and group studies of musicians engaged in practice and performance. One of her earliest successes, at the age of thirteen, was a prize for a painting of people dancing to music and her interest continued when she took the opportunity to sketch jazz musicians in popular after-hours clubs when living in Toronto. A grant in 1994 allowed Smith to travel to Ontario and Québec where she further developed her approach to painting of entire orchestras. Smith's practice includes the grinding and mixing of her own pigments which permits her to achieve a purity of colour in her rendering of light.

Reprinted with permission from Peter Larocque, New Brunswick Museum