Joseph Plaskett

Datura, 2004

pastel on brown paper

19.625 × 27.5 in

 19.6 x


 50 x



plus shipping & taxes

About the work

Joseph Plaskett was a colourist, above all else, and this is demonstrated in this rich and alluring pastel on brown paper. Vibrant orange and gold energize the delicately hanging datura flowers while hinting at their potency. Set against an electric violet background, the trumpet-like flora drop over smooth branches, resulting in a picture that is both balanced, harmonious and evocative. Plaskett’s use of colour defines the composition and also imbues the work with immediacy and emotion.

Medium Works on paper
Signature Signed
Frame Framed
Condition Excellent
Seller Private
Location Victoria, Canada
Provenance Winchester Galleries; Private Collection, Victoria, Canada.

Joseph Plaskett


Joseph Plaskett was born in 1918 in New Westminster, Canada. His works are in public art gallery collections from Prince Edward Island to Vancouver Island, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2001 for his excellence in the field of visual art. His autobiography, A Speaking Likeness (Ronsdale Press), was published in 1999.

Nominated by Lawren Harris, Plaskett won the first Emily Carr Scholarship in 1946. The award changed his life, enabling him to study, first at the California School of Fine Art in San Francisco and then with Hans Hofmann in New York and Provincetown. At the end of the year, recommended by both Lawren Harris and A.Y. Jackson, he accepted the post as Director of the Winnipeg School of Art, where he taught for two years, by which time the lure of Europe became irresistible.

In 1957,  Plaskett moved to Paris with his contemporary, American artist David Hill. Plaskett produced some of his greatest paintings and pastels while living at 2 rue Pecquay in the Marais. A commemorative plaque outside his home was erected by the Prefet de Paris in 2016. The plaque honours Plaskett’s contribution to the art and culture of Canada and beyond.

After Hill’s death in 1977, Plaskett began to spend more time in the UK, where he had inherited a farm bungalow in the centre of Suffolk, aptly named The Cedars. He slowly transformed two acres of rough meadow into an enchanting garden that included an orchard, a pond, an arched bridge, paths and a tea pavilion. He did this with the help of Canadian artist, Mario Doucet, who would become his assistant and companion for the remainder of his life. In 2000, they left their Paris home and moved to The Cedars. Plaskett continued to paint well into his nineties until his death in 2014 at age 96.

Source: The Joe Plaskett Foundation


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