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Unexpected: The Life and Art of Sophie Pemberton, Canadian Artist


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SEPTEMBER 23, 2023 - JANUARY 21, 2024

Curated by Guest Curator Kathryn Bridge
Victoria-born and raised, Sophie Pemberton was the middle daughter, her father’s favourite, and a determined personality. Despite episodes of debilitating illnesses and family tragedies, she pursued a serious international artistic career with paintings exhibited at the Royal Academy and Paris Salon. A portraitist by training, she was also a landscape painter of great talent. Through her international connections and friendships forged at art school in England and France with the advantages of birth and position, Pemberton aimed to become a professional artist, a career not readily accomplished by a woman at this time in history.
This exhibition discusses Pemberton’s life, her family and social networks, her art training and accomplishments, and the historical times in which she lived. It includes women’s suffrage, the rise of modernism, the role of post impressionism in Canada and within Sophie’s own world, and of the influence she brings to today’s world.
This exhibition is generously supported by the Gallery Associates. 
Image Credit: Sophie Pemberton, Driveway of Groos Mansion on Newport Ave., Victoria, oil, 45.7 x 61.7 cm. Gift of George and Lola Kidd. AGGV 1995.040.001
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