Thomas Mower Martin, self-portrait
Thomas Mower Martin, 1838-1934, was born in London, England and received art training at a number of institutions. He came to Canada in 1862. He painted mostly landscapes, animals in action, still lifes and some portraits and travelled widely throughout North America. In 1887 he made his first trip to Western Canada under the sponsorship of the Canadian Pacific Railway. He painted many Western Canadian landscapes and returned approximately ten times. A collection of articles entitled "Canada from an Artist's Point of View" (1895) details some of his activities in the west. Martin was a founding member of the Ontario Society of Artists in 1872 and was director of the Ontario Government Art school from 1877 to 1879. He was also a founder of the Royal Canadian Academy in 1880. In 1907 he produced a major book, Canada, with text by Wilfred Campbell. In 1909 Martin became a member of the Royal British Colonial Society of Artists. He died in Toronto, Ontario in 1934.
Martin was best known as a portrait artist, but he also painted still lifes and landscapes, from Cape Breton in Nova Scotia to Victoria, British Columbia.He also illustrated A. R. Moncrieff's book Kew Gardens (1908) and J. T. Bealby's book Canada (1909).
Martin was equally at ease with oils and watercolour.
Source: Virtual Museum of Canada and Archives: Thomas Mower Martin Fonds