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Emily Carr’s Long Lost Diary

September 20, 2013

SisterAndIwebMasters Gallery is delighted to begin taking pre-orders for the limited facsimile edition of “Sister and I in Alaska”  ($350, Figure 1 Publishing), a book of Emily Carr’s long lost 1907 diary of her trip to Alaska.

“Sister and I in Alaska” is an illustrated, humorous, one-hundred-page, and charming account of Carr’s trip to Alaska in 1907 with her sister, Alice, for whom the diary was made and to whom she dedicated and gave it.

The forty-seven full-page watercolours, still fresh and bright, are accompanied by Carr’s saucy comments about people, animals, ships, and hotels. The diary was a model for the 1910 diary, “Sister and I from Victoria to London,” Carr made for Alice when they travelled from Victoria across Canada to Quebec by train and by ship to Liverpool and London. Carr was then on her way to France.

The Alaska trip was a critical turning point in Carr’s career. When she returned from France at the end of 1911, she was armed with the techniques she needed to fulfil her vision and ambition of recording the totems, villages, houses, and canoes, of the peoples of the Northwest Coast—the Haida, the Tshimshian, the Tlingit, the Gitxsan. She feared that these mighty and powerful works of art were doomed to disappear, and she was determined to document them.

Of course, she was more than a simple copier. She brought to her task an understanding, an artist’s sensibility, and a single-minded devotion that was intense and capable. No one before her, or since, has captured, for western eyes, the aesthetic power of the civilization of that region.

This limited facsimile edition is limited to 149 copies, beautifully reproduced, bound, and boxed. The introduction is by David P. Silcox. The text of a long letter by Tom Daly, the extraordinary National Film Board filmmaker, records an evening he spent in 1947 with Alice Carr and a friend, reading the diary out loud and describing the paintings, house, and studio in Victoria, where Emily Carr spent the last years of her life. (Figure 1 Publishing)

You can pre-order your copy now by contacting us at Masters Gallery (Phone: 403.245.2064/Email: mastersgallery@shawcable.com). Copies purchased now will arrive before the end of October.

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