R. York Wilson
Acrylic on panel, signed lower right and with an artists supply stamp from Rome on the reverse
Painting: 15 ½” x 12”
Frame: 18 ¼” x 14 ½”
Wilson was born in Toronto and studied art at Central Technical School there. In Detroit he began a lucrative career as a commercial artist and illustrator. A trip to Mexico in 1949, convinced him to become a fine artist. He and his wife spent winters in Mexico and travelled throughout Europe. Most of Wilson’s work of the 1950’s and 60’s was almost entirely abstract. His experiments with abstraction resulted in a highly eclectic body of work.
Wilson is well known for his large scale murals, his reputation resting on a series of public works from the mid-1940’s to the mid-1970’s, developing his characteristic lyrical semi-abstract style by 1958.
Wilson also became an innovator in the use of new synthetic paints, including those which had primarily industrial uses. He worked with scientists at Imperial Oil to create PVA, a durable, fluid synthetic paint which he used almost exclusively for his murals.
Wilson exhibited extensively throughout his career and his works are held in numerous museums including the Uffizi (Florence) and the National Gallery of Canada.