“Landscapes, Lights and Shadows”: Artist John F. Marok Celebrates Gatineau Park’s 80th Birthday

“Landscapes, Lights and Shadows”: Artist John F. Marok Celebrates Gatineau Park’s 80th Birthday
Posted on June 22, 2018 | Jean-Paul Murray | Written on June 22, 2018
Letter type:

Author's Note:

Author's Note:

Although the NCC has done its level best to erase Gatineau Park's history, it has nonetheless acknowledged July 1, 1938 as the date of its creation. Artist John F. Marok celebrates this birthday with an exhibition of new paintings titled: Landscapes, Lights and Shadows...

Rupert, Quebec, June 22, 2018 – The national capital’s “conservation” park is celebrating its 80th birthday on July 1, 2018, and artist John F. Marok is marking the occasion with an exhibition of new oil paintings at Chelsea’s l’Orée du Bois restaurant from June 29 to July 1.

“Gatineau Park was created on July 1, 1938 thanks to the efforts of Roderick Percy Sparks. To celebrate this very significant birthday, I painted a series of canvases that present the Gatineau Park’s landscapes from different angles, to showcase its lights, shadows, and beauties,” said Mr. Marok.

In December 1937, Federal Woodlands Preservation League President Percy Sparks sent Prime Minister Mackenzie King a comprehensive plan to create a park in the Gatineau Hills. In 1937-1938, King, who was a long-time supporter of the idea, convinced his government to fund the project. The money bill received Royal Assent on July 1, 1938, and Gatineau Park was born.

And since its creation, the park has steadily grown along a slow and sinuous path fraught with pitfalls, obstacles and setbacks... as well as a success or two. The park is rightly said to be “the jewel of Canada’s Capital.” Its finest attractions—its lookouts, trails and parkways—are a source of pride and joy. But many would also say the park is the victim of abuse, that its public and ecological mission has been hijacked. That building houses on the lakebed confirms the failure of its mission and management.

“To celebrate the birthday of this magnificent park, I am offering a series of paintings that evoke its beauties and shadows, in hopes I will persuade the public that it must be better protected,” said Mr. Marok.

Mr. Marok will greet art and nature lovers from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. for a cocktail/vernissage on the three days of the exhibition. A new painting will be unveiled each day, including one that depicts the new O’Brien House boutique-hotel-manor in the moonlight... The Meech Lake bird's eye view will take your breath away... and you'll learn that Mr. O’Brien was treasurer of Mr. Sparks’ League...

Located at 15 Kingsmere Road, Old Chelsea, l’Orée du Bois is an award-winning, four-star restaurant. It is among En Route Magazine’s top Canadian restaurants: http://fr.oreeduboisrestaurant.com/

Texts accompanying the exhibition are written by Jean-Paul Murray.


For more information: 819-827-1803

John F. Marok – Biography

Born in Montreal in 1960, John Marok is a nationally and internationally recognized artist. His work has been exhibited in New York and Paris, and has been collected by several museums across Canada, including le Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, le Musée du Québec, Toronto’s Museum of Contemporary Art and Calgary’s Nickel Arts Museum. His paintings hang in private collections, as well as in the collections of the University of Ottawa, the University of Quebec, McGill University, the City of Ottawa and the City of Gatineau. He lives and works in Rupert, Quebec.

About The Author

J-P Murrayp's picture

A writer, certified/literary translator and communications specialist with nearly 25 years experience working on Parliament Hill. In 2015, Ekstasis Editions published his translation of Robert Lalonde's Little... More