Quebec City 1795 – Quebec City 1855
View of Quebec City from Pointe De Lévy
Oil on canvas
90 x 120 cm
Purchase, gift of the Succession J.A. DeSève and Horsley and Annie Townsend Bequest, inv. 1980.3
Quebec and Canadian Art
Joseph Légaré is the first Canadian-born artist with an interest in landscape painting, a genre that dominated the British military topographers at the time. Légaré no doubt based his View of Quebec City from Pointe De Lévy on a similarly framed watercolour by Robert Coulson, an officer in the Grenadier Guards stationed in Quebec City between 1839 and 1842. This careful composition shows Quebec City, the “Gibraltar of America,” in a grand setting: Cape Diamant, bordered by the Saint Lawrence and the mouth of the Saint-Charles River, stands out against the Beauport Coast and the Laurentians, which blend into the atmospheric perspective of the far ground.