Art Hider, though noted for his horses, executed probably the two most famous Canadian ship portraits of the 19th or 20th centuries: the Canadian Pacific Railway Company's Empress of Asia, and the Allan Line's Calgarian/Alsatian.
They are as fine - or finer - than anything Ken Shoesmith or Walter Thomas ever did for Cunard, done by a guy who loved painting horses...
Both are magnificent to behold and stunningly huge as well. If you are extremely lucky you will find them in their original shipping line frames and glass.
These fabulous chromolithographs were produced in 1912 and 1913 during the glorious heyday of Canadian immigrant shipping, just before World War I changed the world forever.
The white Empress ships of the Canadian Pacific Railway fleet, steamed out of Vancouver on the Pacific run to the orient from 1887 on, and after 1903, on the Atlantic run as well, after CP bought out the Elder Dempster and the Beaver Lines.
The Allan liners were busy on the Atlantic run, bringing immigrants from Europe to Halifax and Quebec since the late 1800s.
The new Alsatian and Calgarian were introduced just before Canadian Pacific took over the Allan Line in 1915.
|Great Canadian Heritage Treasure|
|HMS Prince of Wales in the China Sea - AH Hider|
|Orig. oil - Image Size - 61 x 76 cm
Found - Port Hope, ON
A fabulous discovery of a huge oil by Great Canadian Painter Art Hider, features the British King George V class battleship, HMS Prince of Wales, steaming to a date with destiny that would forever end the reign of battleships as the queens of the battle fleet. In the distance is the unmistakable profile of the battle cruiser HMS Repulse.
Art probably painted Prince of Wales as a commission for a Canadian calendar because she had brought Sir Winston Churchill near to Canadian shores, for a meeting in Newfoundland, with US President Roosevelt, at which they had signed the Atlantic Charter, and then, only months later, sank, along with Repulse, in a spectacular war disaster that mesmerized the world and changed the course of history.
Canada has never had battleships of its own. It was too small and poor a country to afford the luxury of the capital war toys afforded by Britain, the US, Germany, France, and Italy.
So from the beginning, Canadians historically bought Britain's cast-offs, in cruisers, aircraft carriers, and in the 1990s, leaky, rusting, malfunctioning submarines. What Britain's military had mothballed as outmoded and deteriorating rapidly, found a willing purchaser in Canadian naval officers who wanted war toys that the big boys played with, but affordable enough to convince its civilian political masters that they were a good deal.
As a result Canadian tax payers have paid billions of dollars to upgrade submarines with damaged hulls, that leak, explode and catch fire, kill their crews, and rust, and after years of upgrades, are still not operational, a decade after they were bought second hand. Civil servants and their political masters continue to call this a good deal... Apparently they got that from the British too...
Arthur Henry Hider (1870-1952) - 6