Bear Camp V (Baptiste Lake, Ontario), 1950 (circa February 23)
Inscriptionssigned, [in 1946, per Silcox / Milne], ‘DAVID MILNE’ (verso, lower left) inscribed by Duncan, ‘W-560 David Milne / Bear Camp II, blue cabin / (Feb. 1950) (verso); inscribed ‘David Milne / Bear Camp II: blue cabin / (feb 1950) / W-627 (verso)
Duncan / Picture Loan.
John Aird, Toronto, circa 1955.
Laing Galleries, Toronto, 1967.
S. Pollock, Montreal, 1967.
H. Hallward, Montreal, 1970.
Marlborough-Godard Gallery, Toronto, 1974;
Acquired from the above by Private Collection, Montreal, 1974.
ExhibitionsToronto, Picture Loan Society, Water Colours by David Milne, 21 February - 9 March 1951, no. 12 as "Bear Camp No. 2".
Toronto, Hart House, University of Toronto, David Milne, 7 - 22 January 1962, as "Bear Camp No. 2".
LiteratureDavid Silcox, Painting Place: The Life and Work of David B. Milne, (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996), repr. p. 362 as "Bear Camp V, 1950";
David Milne Jr. and David P. Silcox, David B. Milne: Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings Volume 2: 1929 - 1953, (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1998), no. 502.26, repr. p. 949, as "Bear Camp V".
As cited in David B. Milne: Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings Volume 2: 1929 - 1953, p. 949:
Duncan Catalogue W-627, as Bear Camp II, NGC;
Milne to Kathleen Milne, Thursday  February [24 February 1950] (quoted in 502.23), MFP;
Milne to Douglas Duncan, Wednesday [10 May 1950], MFP;
Laing sale records, not numbered, as Bear Camp Blue Cabin, Laing estate.
From [Silcox / Milne 503.23, p.947-8]:
"The subject is Camp Makwan, originally a boys' camp, later a resort, on the west shore of Lavalley Bay in Baptist Lake. Milne travelled past the resort on all his trips to the store at Baptiste village. In his 23 February letter he wrote: 'I have been holding off on going home a little to try and leave the picture in fairly good shape ... Today and yesterday painted pictures of Makwan, yesterday winter from ice [probably Bear Camp IV, 502.25], second painting, today fall from water [a version of the Bear Camp series, one of the 502.22-4 or 502.26-8], third painting. The winter one finished but I am doubtful of the other one.
Milne to Kathleen Milne, Thursday [23 February 1950].
All together there are seven treatments of the Bear Camp subject, 502.22-8. The sequence in which they were done, however, is uncertain. Duncan's numbering may not have been chronologically accurate, so we cannot be sure to which pictures Milne was referring in his letter. The two versions with motor-boats (Bear Camp VI and VII, 502.27-8) probably came later, and we know the subject drapped by 10 May 1950. [...]"
Mark A. Cheetham
The Art Gallery of Ontario has prepared an informative series of videos on Milne, one of which explores Baptiste Lake through the artist’s diaries and a commentary by David Milne, Jr., who remembers living there when this picture was made: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sB5JzV7G1-k