Background



The A.Y. Jackson Trail depicts the final years of Jackson's career that was spent in mainly Eastern Ontario when he moved to his niece's home in Manotick in 1952 and later to MacLaren St. in Ottawa.  A.Y. never drove so was always dependent on someone else for his local field trips, usually Ralph Burton.  More extensive outings such as to Renfrew County often saw A.Y. join with artist friends Ralph Burton and Maurice Haycock as they wended their way up the valley through Carp, Dunrobin, Arnprior, Burnstown and Dacre to Lake Clear where they often stayed with friend Dr Bob Starrs.

Lake Clear acted as sort of a hub for their field sketching from which they branched out to nearby vistas in the Bonnechere River and Madawaska River watersheds such as Brudenell, Killaloe, Rockingham, Quadville, Barry’s Bay, Paugh Lake, Madawaska and Whitney to Algonquin Park

Some fifty years later, two contemporary Lake Clear artists have traced Jackson’s travels using actual paintings, titles, notes and personal experience to locate the painting sites of some of his sketches. Kathy M. Haycock is the daughter of Maurice Haycock. John Almstedt painted with Ralph Burton in the 1970s.
 
While following the back roads along The A.Y. Jackson Trail, keep an eye out for the majestic scenery along the way between the sites that are marked on the map. Remember that Jackson looked at every lake, field, farm, hill, forest edge, river and creek with an artist’s appreciation of the composition, colour, form and rhythm before him. He stopped and painted a great many sketches in the area, most are still waiting to be rediscovered.
 
Everyone who follows The A.Y. Jackson Trail will have a different unique and rich personal experience. Students, artists, residents and visitors alike may admire the landscape with a fresh perspective. Whether you engage in photography, painting, drawing or writing, you can immerse yourself in the muse that inspired A.Y. Jackson, his painting companions, and the artists who have followed.
 
Jackson made a great contribution to the artistic appreciation of the region. He recognized the incredible beauty in the Madawaska Hills and through his many paintings he brought it to the attention of the world. Now others can discover and appreciate the astonishing diversity and splendor of some actual painting sites and the surrounding landscape that so attracted him.

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