Out of Saint John
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In "Out of Saint John", Bobak positions herself partway up the hill - people, rocks and buildings pushed toward the sides of the composition - leaving her signature large area of negative space in the bottom and middle of the painting, making the viewers eyes reach for the top of the hill, as if we are on the steep road ourselves. The movement is palpable.
And once we reach the top, we are rewarded with the golden, orange of the sunset which dapples on and accentuates the historical buildings and outlines the figures climbing the hill.
Bobak is recognized for her portrayal of people during celebrations and in their daily lives, but it is also the environs that are important in chronicling the narrative of the place and bring the painting to life.
On the left, the houses are built on cliffs and the road we see is lower Main Street which continues on to meet the Saint John River. Historically this area has been referred to as Indiantown. It is a mixed residential and business area and was the central thoroughfare of Saint John. This was the portion of the river that was, for years, the location for ferries and steamer ships, as it was a safe place to harbour. It was a favourite painting location for artists including Jack Humphrey, Ted and Rosamond Campbell and Gerard Collins."
Framed dimension: 44 x 34.24 in.
There is an approx. 3/8 in. triangular paint loss 16 3/4 in. from top and 1 1/2 in. from RHS. Also some cleavage apparent in the upper quadrant.