Fonds - Claude Breeze fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Claude Breeze fonds

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  • 1954-1996 (Creation)

Physical description area

Physical description

2.52 m of textual records of art
649 photographs
306 works of art

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Name of creator

Biographical history

Claude Breeze is a painter of national repute. Born in Nelson, BC in 1938, he spent his childhood in Saskatoon living with his grandparents. In high school he was taught by artist Ernest Lindner, and received a Certificate in Arts from the University of Saskatchewan, Regina College, where he studied under Ron Bloore, Roy Kiyooka, Ken Lochhead and Art McKay. In 1959 he moved to British Columbia to attend the Vancouver School of Art, then joined the Medical Illustration Department sat the Vancouver General Hospital. Vancouver in the sixties was a mecca for artists, poets, writers, and musicians and Breeze and Ardis Watson, whom he married on February 5, 1969, collected a lively group around them, including artist Brian Fisher (who had also attended Regina College), poet John Newlove, photographer Fred Herzog, and musician Barry Hall. Breeze has worked as an instructor at Simon Fraser University (1967), the Banff Centre School of Fine Arts (1972), the University of Calgary (1975), and the Emily Carr School of Art in Vancouver (1988). He was Artist-in-Residence at the University of Western Ontario in London from 1972 to 1975. In 1976 he was appointed Associate Professor of Art at York university in Toronto where he remains. Claude Breeze, under the sponsorship of Vancouver painter Jack Shadbolt, held his first one-man show 'Lovers in a Landscape' at New Design Gallery in Vancouver in 1965. Since the he has had many one-man shows from coast to coast in Canada, and in Paris, France. He has participated in numerpus group shows across Canada and in the United States, England, France and Scotland. Claude Breeze's paintings have been purchased by galleries and universities all across Canada and by several major Canadian corporations. He has been awarded commissions for the Bank of Nova Scotia; Pacific Centre Mall, Vancouver, British Columbia; the Lawrence West Subway Station; the Spadina Line of the Toronto Transit Commission (1977); and the London Court House in London, Ontario (1974). Articles relating to his work have been published in various art magazine and books, in Canada and the United States. He was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1974 and was awarded the Queen's Silver Jubilee Medal in 1978.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Fonds consist of personal papers documenting the artistic and teaching career of Claude Breeze. The records are arranged in nine series: Art Works, Drawings, Sketches and Sketchbooks; Calendars and Diaries; Correspondence; Personal Financial Records; General Files; Newspaper Clippings; Photographs; Publications; and Scrapbooks. These papers, and in particular the wealth of sketches, drawings, and photographs included in the fonds, trace in detail the development of Breeze's art from his first works produced in the early 1950's to 1969 and beyond. A rich collection of correspondence, photographs, publications, and publicity materials reveals a generation of Canadian artists, poets, and writers who were strongly influenced by the 1960s. Also included is correspondence with Canadian public and commercial art galleries and with Breeze's patrons, Dr. Ken and Joyce Morton of Vancouver.

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Physical condition

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Original order not deemed usable.

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Restrictions on access

Open for research. Two files of confidential material in Accession 96-26 are restricted.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Copyright retained by the donor.

Finding aids

Inventories for 87-94 and 96-26 are available.

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General note

All 306 art works are oversize. Fonds includes 18 additional oversize items.

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