Geoffrey Traunter (1901-1979) born in Liverpool turn of the Century and arriving in Quebec City 1928, after WWI. Little is known of his training or his exposure to the great war or his early activities in his new country but during the next few years he achieved the stature of a listed Canadian artist.
He is represented by Vancouver Public Library - Fine Arts and History Department, University of British Columbia - Fine Arts Library, Vancouver Art Gallery - Library and the National Gallery of Canada.
It was possibly in the 1940's when his artwork took him into a new direction. Like many of the Group of Seven painters, (Tom Thomson, Arthur Lismer, Frank Carmichael, Frank Johnston, etc.) , who worked at 'The Grip' , all as illustrators in the early 1900's, Geoffrey was an illustrator working with designs and advertising, up until 1948 and possibly the early 1950's, his day job being an illustrator with the Canadian Home Journal.
By the 1960's he was centered in Toronto and moved around in artistic circles making a name for himself as a portraitist. There is an article in the Ottawa Journal in 1967 where one of his portraits was written up in that journal as: "Toronto artist Geoffrey Traunter's, 'Seventeen Today' is portraiture at its best".
When exactly he moved to Vancouver I'm not sure but it is recorded that Loraine Wellman, a successful West Coast artist studied portrait painting with Geoffrey Traunter.
The portrait in this painting is from 'Mignon', the characters are Laerte and Philine, performed by Antonio Santos and Noelle Rogers at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, January, 1977 by the Vancouver Opera Association, which has just transformed itself from an Opera House to a Festival.
Noëlle Rogers has performed in operas and concerts with great artists, including: Luciano Pavarotti, John Alexander, Franz Allers, Norman Ayerton, Richard Bonynge, Frank Corsaro, Plácido Domingo, etc. She made her home in Frankfurt, Berlin, Milan and Rome and transitioned into a second career, that of a professional singing teacher. She's been awarded “Professor of the Year” and the semester appraisals of teachers consistently praise her as a teacher and person. Her boss told her that she has accomplished something that had never happened before at the University - she received a perfect score from every one of her students.
Mignon was recorded live in Vancouver in 1977 with Antonio Santos as Laerte and Noelle Rogers as Philine. This is truly a beautiful recording of a seldom performed and rarely recorded opera. The album is still available, I believe through Amazon.
A remarkable painting from our West Coast.
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Unframed Image: 24" x 18"