Painted Land Digital is the digital companion to Painted Land: In Search Of The Group Of Seven, a feature length documentary on the Group Of Seven, produced for TVOntario, CBC and CTS. Using navigable first person HD aerial video flythroughs of the rugged and beautiful Canadian wilderness, you can ‘travel’ through the region and discover 24 Group of Seven paintings ‘hung’ virtually along the route, stepping off the journey whenever you like, exploring these works of art in detail, in the very context in which they were created.
Painted Land Digital is an Immersive Art Discovery Experience. There are 24 breathtaking journeys from which to choose, each one resolving in an exploration of a specific work of art by one of the original members of the Group Of Seven.
You are able to create your own custom journey, exploring the works of art that interest you. You can choose whether to take a video journey or a photographic journey.
Video journeys allow you to fly through the region, approaching each painting location in Hi Definition video, eventually landing in the very spot where a Group of Seven artist painted the work of art found at that location.
Photo journeys allow you to jump from location to location, where you’ll find breathtaking panoramic photography, captured by renowned photographer Gary McGuffin. Within each panorama, you’ll be able to find a Group of Seven painting embedded within the broader landscape and then pull that work of art from its environmental context and explore further.
Painted Land: In Search of the Group of Seven seamlessly weaves the history and experiences of these artists - Lawren Harris, J.E.H. MacDonald, AY Jackson, Frank Johnston, Arthur Lismer, Franklin Carmichael and AJ Casson - with the adventures of three modern day sleuths, historian Michael Burtch, and the writer and photographer team of Gary and Joanie McGuffin, who are determined to track down the locations of these famous paintings.
Archival film, letters, journals and photographs of the artists - some of which have never been seen in public - will take the audience back in time to meet these remarkable people. Stunning cinematography will take viewers up mountains, down canyons, through rivers and over portages with our trio, as they try to achieve their own personal quest. Will they succeed and ‘walk in the footsteps’ of these famous artists?
Past meets present with the creation of a film that is evocative in approach, energized by breathtaking cinematography and sound design, offering a new and articulate voice to the men of the Group of Seven, who take the lead and inform our story throughout the film.
My Painted Land is a virtual art gallery, exhibiting a curation of the very best in Canadian landscape photography and painting. Works have been submitted by artists and photographers from coast to coast to coast.
You are encouraged to upload your original image to our collection and tell us why it’s meaningful to you. You can also vote to raise your favourite paintings and photographs to be viewed by our panel of Judges. Images selected by our Judges will be curated into small albums and shared on social media.
We invite you to share your favourite paintings and photographs found here through your social media channels, and encourage others to proudly share the majesty of our land.
Judges: Victoria, AJ MacDonald (Fran’s), Dave Marshak
The Group of Seven were a collective of artists who explored and painted their way across the rugged Canadian North from 1920 into the early 1930s. Their distinctive representation of the Canadian wilderness has forever changed the art landscape. Most of the original group met while working at Toronto design firm, Grip Ltd., and often went on painting and sketching excursions together.
The original group consisted of 7 core members; Lawren Harris, Franklin Carmichael, A.Y. Jackson, J.E.H. MacDonald, Frank Johnston, Arthur Lismer, and Frederick Varley. Later, A.J. Casson, Edwin Holgate and LeMoine FitzGerald also joined the group, bringing the grand total up to 10 members. Well-known contemporaries of the Group, Tom Thomson and Emily Carr accompanied them on many of their excursions.
The film was shot in the Algoma region of Ontario, Canada, near the town of Sault Ste. Marie. Specific areas visited include Agawa Canyon, Batchewana, Coldwell, The North Shore of Lake Superior and the Slate Islands.
To learn about the filmmakers and subjects of the film, please see the ‘About The Film’ section of the site.
Many of the paintings you’ve seen on this site live in your local museums and in art galleries across Ontario. Some belong to private owners who have graciously given us permission to use them as part of this project. Participating galleries include the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the Art Gallery of Algoma, the National Gallery of Canada, The Mcdonald Stewart Art Centre, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Masters Gallery Limited, Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, University of Toronto, Winnipeg Art, Gallery, Vancouver Art Gallery, and the Art Gallery of Ontario.