The artist

Alexander Young Jackson

A. Y. Jackson painting

Painting by Canadian War Artist A.Y Jackson.
A copse, evening. (France 1918).
Photo credit 31.Copyright Canadian War Museum.

Alexander was born in Montreal, Canada. He studied art in Europe and America producing his own landscape artworks influence by Impressionism. In 1914 he enlisted in the Canadian army with the 60th battalion and soon crossed the ocean to continue training in England as part of the Expeditionary Force.

In June 1916 he was wounded at Maple Copse and was sent to hospital in Etaples then returned to England for further treatment. After taking on light duties at Hastings he transferred to he reserve battalion at Shoreham army Camp.

He had no happy memory of his time at Shoreham, with little food, military police everywhere and poor training officers who had never been to the Front line. He even became part of a short-lived mutiny in the camp when his company refused to go on parade due to the poor conditions.  Whilst at Shoreham he was encouraged to go to London to meet Lord Beaverbrook and offer his skills as an artist to the Canadian War Records Office. Soon Alexander was to return to France this time as a War Artist and went on to produce some fantastic and poignant paintings.

After the war he returned to Canada to continue his art and is today famous for his influence on Canadian art as a founding member of the art movement the Group of Seven.

Information from A.Y. Jackson’s autobiography, ‘A Painter’s Country’.


Find out more

Watch a film created by Worthing College students about A.Y. Jackson.
Visit the A. Y.  Jackson Discovery Centre website
Read Jackson, A. Y. 1958 A Painter’s Country