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Curator's Statement

List of Works

Works by
L. L. FitzGerald

Works by Colleagues
and Students

Photographs and
Archival Documents

A FitzGerald Chronology

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FitzGerald in Context


1890Lionel LeMoine FitzGerald born in Winnipeg on March 17; mother, Belle Hicks, father, Lionel Henry FitzGerald.

1904Leaves school to work as an office boy for various companies, first in the wholesale drug office of Martin, Bole and Wynne.1 The Winnipeg Public Library opens this year,* and FitzGerald begins to spend much time reading Ruskin and other books on art.
*(Christine Lalonde indicates that the library opened in 1906 but otherwise accepts as true FitzGerald's reading habits and self education generally.)

1906Wins second prize as exhibitor in Winnipeg Industrial Exhibition for "Drawing-Copy."2

1908-09Rents a studio and shares expenses with Nigel S. Wigston, who works for A.S. Kesthelyi's School of Fine Arts, Winnipeg.3

1910FitzGerald leaves Winnipeg to work in Chicago, where he stays with relatives and visits the Chicago Art Institute.5 Is urged by his family to return home and "give up the idea of going in for art."6

1911Back in Winnipeg he works for Osler, Hammond and Nanton, a real estate and brokerage firm.7 Exhibits three works in a show in the Public Library sponsored by the Women's Art Assocation.8

1912Marries Felicia (Vally) Wright of Ottawa. Leaves his office job to work in office of a commercial artist, later (1918) working in Display Department of T. Eaton Co. Ltd., where he described his duties as "slavery."9

1913Exhibits in R.C.A.A. special exhibition in Winnipeg, opening 16 December 1912, sponsored by the Winnipeg Industrial Bureau, Fine Arts Committee. The exhibition includes a "Winnipeg Artists" section, in which L.L.F. exhibits No. 246, Landscape, whereabouts now unknown.The Winnipeg Museum of Fine Arts (later to become the Winnipeg Art Gallery) and the Winnipeg School of Art open on Main Street. Geraldine FitzGerald, LeMoine's sister, registers in the school's first term, but LeMoine does not.10 H.E. Berman and Walter J. Phillips take up residence in Winnipeg. Brigden's (Brigdens) of Winnipeg is established, employing many artists.

1914Exhibition and sale of oils and watercolours by D. MacQuarrie of Scotland, first curator of the Winnipeg Museum of Fine Arts, and LeMoine FitzGerald, at their studio, 416 Chamber of Commerce Building, Winnipeg.11 FitzGerald wins bronze medal at Winnipeg Industrial Fair.12 Holidays in East (Ottawa).13

1916Son, Lionel Edward FitzGerald, born 30 March.

1918The National Gallery of Canada purchases its first FitzGerald work: Late Fall, Manitoba, 1918 (NGC acc. no. 1483).

1919Birth of daughter, Patricia LeMoine, 25 March.

1920Trip to Chicago in January.14 Later assisted as installation in Manitoba Legislature of the murals by Augustus Vincent Tack of New York.

1921First one-man exhibition, at The Winnipeg Art Gallery. Frank H. (Franz) Johnston appointed principal of Winnipeg School of Art, remaining until 1924.

1921-22FitzGerald spends the winter in New York, studying at the Art Students League, from November through March, under Boardman Robinson and Kenneth Hayes Miller. Remains in Montreal April to July, returning to Winnipeg 19 July.15

1922-24Works in commercial design.

1924Begins teaching at the Winnipeg School of Art, under principal C. Keith Gebhardt, who had studied at the Chicago Art Institute.

1925Spends summer in Banff, Alberta.

1927Critic Robert Ayre moves to Montreal, where he maintains a correspondence with FitzGerald.

1928FitzGerald visits Gebhardt's parents in Cheboygan, Michigan, returning to Winnipeg with Gebhardt by way of Minneapolis.16 Fritz Brandtner arrives in Winnipeg from Poland. Exhibition of FitzGerald's works at the Arts and Letters Club, Toronto, organized by J.E.H. MacDonald, attracts the attention of Lawren Harris, who buys a work.

1929Appointed principal of the Winnipeg School of Art, replacing Gebhardt, who had resigned to return to the U.S. Beginning of friendship with Bertram Brooker, who visits L.L.F. this year. Exhibition at Dent's Publishing House, Toronto, brings further notice from the Group of Seven members.

1930Travels to Minneapolis, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Washington, Philadelphia, New York City, Montreal, Ottawa, and Toronto, to look at art education facilities.

1931-32FitzGerald ill for several months with pneumonia.

1932Becomes a member of the Group of Seven.

1933The Group of Seven expands into the Canadian Group of Painters, and FitzGerald is named a founding member.

1934Fritz Brandtner moves to Montreal, and is given an introduction to Robert Ayre by FitzGerald.

1935FitzGerald and his wife drive to New York to take Edward back to his studies.17

1936The Picture Loan Society opens its gallery in Toronto (chief organizer, Douglas M. Duncan who later became an important collector of and agent for FitzGerald works.).

1938L.L.F. travels to Ottawa and Toronto to find a teacher for the School. Stays with Brooker in Toronto. Travels to Minneapolis. A.Y. Jackson visits the FitzGeralds.

1940FitzGerald's mother dies. L.L.F.'s application for a Gugggenheim fellowship is unsuccessful.

1942-44Visits his daughter on the West Coast each summer, and works on Bowen Island, near Vancouver. Meets Lawren Harris for the first time in 1942 in Vancouver, although they had corresponded previously.

1943FitzGerald's father dies.

1947-49A leave of absence from the School of Art for two consecutive winters is made possible by financing arranged from W.H. McConnell, of Montreal, through Mrs. George Ferguson, Montreal, a collector of FitzGerald's works and a former Winnipegger.

1949FitzGerald resigns his position at the School of Art.

1950The Winnipeg School of Art joins the University of Manitoba. FitzGerald meets the Thomases. Dr. E.J. Thomas is now a prominent Winnipeg collector and an authority on FitzGerald's works.

1951The FitzGeralds visit their son in Mexico, 28 January to middle of May.

1952The artist receives Honoary LL.D. from the University of Manitoba.

1953Acts as judge at the Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto. Visits Brooker.

1954Visits Regina to judge N.G.C. show. Gives talk on CBC Midwest Network, 1 December, "Painters on the Prairie."

1955Death of Bertram Brooker.

1956L.LeMoine FitzGerald dies in Winnipeg, 5 August. His ashes are scattered over the fields at Snowflake, Manitoba.

1958Memorial Exhibition is organized by Douglas Duncan, Alan Jarvis, Ferdinand Eckhardt, Lawren Harris, A.O. Brigden, and Dr. E.J. Thomas. Fifty-eight works go on an eleven-month cross-Canada tour.


1. L.L.F. to Robert Ayre, 25 July 1949, Ayre Papers, Queen's University Archives.
2. Exhibition Card, 1906, private collection.
3. L.L.F. Account Book 1-0181, n.p., December 1908
4. F.F.C. documents 1-0025, 12-0121
5. Diary of L.L. FitzGerald, 6 June 1930 (FSC document 1-0183).
6. L.L.F.'s mother to LeMoine, 26, October 1910 (FSC document 11-0175).
7. Correspondence in FSC from Vally Wright to L.L.F.
8. Robert Ayre, FitzGerald Monograph, Ayre Papers, Queen's University Archives.
9. L.L.F. Account Book (FSC document 1-0181) 18 February 1918.
10. Winnipeg School of Art Register, 1913, in FSC.
11. L.L.F. Account Book, May 1914.
12. Ibid., 16 July 1914.
13. Ibid., August 1914.
14. Ibid., 10-17 January 1920.
15. Ibid., 1922.
16. L.L.F. to Mr. and Mrs. Gebhardt, 21 December 1928. (FSC document 24-0008).
17. Diary of Felicia (Vally) FitzGerald, 27 November, 1935 (FSC document 1-0200).

Source: Helen Coy, FitzGerald as Printmaker, University of Manitoba Press, 1982. The chronology appears on pp.109-110.

*This chronology will be expanded on in light of new information. Viewers of this chronology are invited to make corrections and additions and to send them to the FitzGerald Study Centre FitzGerald Research Project.

Click here to see a FitzGerald Genealogy.

Click here to see the exhibition's Display Cases of documents and photographs.