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Inner Places: The Life of David Milne by James King

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8vo. pp. 388. profusely illustrated in colour & b/w. bibliography. index. bds. dw. Toronto: Dundurn, [2015].

 

2016 Hamilton Arts Council Literary Award for Non-Fiction — Winner


David Milne is one of Canada’s finest artists, a man whose work speaks to the intricate beauty of the world as he experienced it.

David Milne (1882–1953) dedicated his life to exploring nature and casting it into art in a variety of modernist formats. He was born into poverty in rural Ontario and remained poor all his life because of his relentless dedication to his art. For him, art was life. Nothing mattered to him as much as the enormous “kick“ he felt when he was able to produce the image his artist's eye told him was there.

Milne returned to Ontario in 1929 after a twenty-five-year stay in the United States. In every place he lived his peripatetic existence, Milne created a different kind of landscape painting. In his chosen life of solitude, his mind and hand remained very much alive.

Since Milne spent as much time writing as he did painting, he provides an enormous amount of material for a life writer. His biography re-creates the texture of the artist's one-of-a-kind life and struggles, allowing a truly intimate portrait to emerge.