Lansdowne Lecture - I.S. MacLaren

Lansdowne Lecture “‘a grate acation’: The Environments of Fort Victoria in 1847 according to ‘Bushway’ Paul Kane (aka Paolo Canoe, Red Porcupine) and unknown Others”

Monday, October 22, 7:00 p.m.
David Turpin Building, Room A102

Paul Kane has been rusticating in his fame for some time, a fame that Toronto, Montréal, and London fashioned after his return from travels across the continent to Vancouver Island and Fort Victoria. Who was this “Father of Canadian Art” while he was staying at Victoria and its environs in April and May 1847, and what cultural and other environments did he encounter when Fort Victoria was only four years old?

Aiming for an environmental history of the artist’s travels, one must weigh the published and celebrated Paul Kane with Paolo Canoe, Red Porcupine, and Bushway, identities he gave himself or that others gave while he travelled. This effort emphasizes Kane in the field over Kane in the studio. Thereby, a fresh view of Victoria and its Indigenous peoples emerges. When he is pried away from the polished colonial agent of book and studio, more emerges about the man, people, and places known as Paul Kane.