Frederick Arthur Verner1836 - 1928
Born: February 26, 1836, Hammondsville (Sheridan), Ont.
Died: May 6, 1928, Ontario
Sketching in school and at home, Frederick Verner exhibited talent at a young age. In 1852, when he was sixteen, Verner exhibited work and won a prize at the Upper Canada's Provincial Art Exhibition. At the exhibition, Verner met and became fascinated with the Native American paintings of Paul Kane. Verner desperately wanted to study with Kane, but Kane dismissed the young man. In 1856, Verner desired a formal art training and went to study at Leigh's Academy in England. Upon his return to Toronto in 1862, he worked as a photographer until deciding to concentrate on painting in 1874. Remembering Kane, Verner painted solely wildlife and Native American subject matter. Verner’s concern for disappearing wildlife occupied a majority of his paintings.
The National Museum of Wildlife Art's Bison At Rest depicts several buffalo grazing near water. A quiet, heroic buffalo stands central in the composition. The romantic painting reveals Verner's soft sense of light and atmosphere as well as his compositional skills. Verner observed and sketched live buffalo in the field. In the studio, he recreated the buffalo's activities, such as grazing, resting, and even running in a stampede.
Verner was the first Canadian member of the Royal British Colonial Society of Artists and a founding member of the Ontario Society of Artists. He also won a number of medals, including the ones at the 1901 Pan-American Exhibition in Buffalo and the 1910 International Exhibition of Fine Arts in Buenos Aires. Verner's work is recognized in many private collections and museums, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Amon Carter Museum, the Museum of Quebec, and the National Museum of Wildlife Art.