Cottingham School with the Yellow Flag

1970-71
Oil on canvas

"I had to learn here, that I would never find the same landscape, the same quality of life which we had left behind in Europe and North Africa. What I saw around me at first seemed banal and often ugly. Only slowly I saw it differently, the very sharp light here, which has something of the light of Tunis, the landscape much larger and and more chaotic. In pursuing it, one can bring a different tension into one's painting." more


Christiane Pflug (née Shütt) is a Canadian artist who was born in Berlin in 1936 and died from an overdose on the Toronto Islands in 1972.
xxxShe spent her childhood in Berlin. The parents were not married. The father died when she was four. Her mother, a fashion designer, worked during the war years as a nurse.
xxx From age seven to twelve she stayed in the Austrian Tyrol town of Kitzbühl with family friends - the widow of the Austrian working-class poet Petzold - to escape the bombing in Berlin.
xxx She rejoined her mother in Frankfurt. When her family immigrated to Canada, she went to Paris to study fashion design. On the train to Paris, on New Year's 1954, she met Michael Pflug who was to become her husband. With his encouragement and that of artists Vieira de Silva and Arpad Scenes, Christiane began to paint. She had no formal training.
xxxBetween 1957 and 1959, in Tunis - where her two daughters were born - Christiane produced some of her strongest paintings. She then rejoined her family in Canada and, upon reunion with her husband in Toronto in 1960, resumed painting.
xxxShe produced a series of landscapes seen from a window on Yonge Street from 1960 to 1962, and a series of interiors, doors and windows with dolls, in her house on Woodlawn Avenue from 1962 to 1967. This was followed by a series of large portraits of her two daughters and her dealer Avrom Issacs, in a similar setting. From her new home on Birch Avenue she produced a series of city landscapes from 1967 to her death.
Quoted from Provincial Essays

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