John Hartman – Many Lives Mark This Place

past exhibition


Many Lives Mark This Place

Canadian Writers in the Landscapes that Inspire Them

Curated by Mary Reid

January 20th 2023 – April 1st 2023 | 11:00 am – 5:45 pm Canada House, Trafalgar Square (Pall Mall Entrance)

A remarkable mosaic of the literary and physical space of Canada.
– Ian M. Thom

Long interested in people’s connection to their environment, John Hartman embarked on a project to capture the intimate relationship Canadian authors have with their personal places of inspiration. Hartman allowed his own reading interests to direct the choice of subjects who in turn selected the backdrops to their portraits.

These portraits celebrate the richness of Canada’s literary fabric and speak to the power of the imagination in experiencing (physically, emotionally, and philosophically) the diverse landscape which links Canada together.

The works on display have been selected by Mary Reid, Director/Curator of the Woodstock Art Gallery, where a larger version of the exhibition has been shown in various venues across Canada from 2020 to present.

Many Lives Mark This Place is accompanied by a publication that features short essays from the authors, written in response to their respective portrait. The full series of portraits and short film on the John Hartman can be viewed at

The Woodstock Art Gallery is a division of the Culture Department of the City of Woodstock, Ontario.

Artist Bio

Born in 1950, John Hartman grew up in Midland, Ontario. He first received national exposure for his painting with the exhibition and book Big North, which toured Canada between 1999 and 2002.

Hartman’s path of painting, inspired by the intimate and intertwined relationship between people and place, took a turn in 2003. He began to paint aerial views of cities as living organisms. These paintings composed the exhibition and book CITIES, which toured nationally and internationally from 2007 to 2009.

Starting in 2014, Hartman began to turn his focus towards the representation of portraiture with the landscape moving to a supporting backdrop.

Hartman’s artwork is represented in the collections of over 40 museums and public art galleries across Canada and internationally. To date, he has had seven books published on his artwork, including the book of the same title that accompanies this exhibition.

Over his career, Hartman has won numerous awards. He was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 2021.

For more information about the artist, this exhibition and the authors represented please visit

Curator’s Bio

Mary Reid is currently the Director/Curator of the Woodstock Art Gallery as well as a sessional instructor for Fanshawe Collage’s Fine Art Program. Prior to her move back to Ontario in 2014 she was the Director/ Curator of the School of Art Gallery at the University of Manitoba (2011 to 2014) and the Curator of Contemporary Art and Photography at Winnipeg Art Gallery (2004 to 2011).

Before moving out west for a decade she was the curator at the MacLaren Art Centre, Barrie, Ontario. Reid received her graduate degree in Art History from York University, Toronto and returned to complete her Master of Business Administration with a specialization in Arts and Media Administration in 2020.

About the Woodstock Art Gallery

Mandate: Serving our region through our developing public collections, exhibitions and education programs, we are a leading resource for creativity.

Mission Statement: As the region’s only public art gallery, the Woodstock Art Gallery fosters the wellbeing of our community by preserving our local artistic heritage and cultivating new expressions and experiences of art.

Vision Statement: The Woodstock Art Gallery will be integral to our community’s wellness and vibrancy by broadening appreciation of visual art and celebrating our region’s diversity.

The Woodstock Art Gallery is a division of the Culture Department of the City of Woodstock, Ontario.

For more information, please visit

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