Lynn Donoghue

“It’s only in our relationship to other people that we find meaning.”
– Lynn Donoghue (The Toronto Star, September 16, 1993)

Lynn Donoghue was born in Red Lake, Ontario, in 1953. Due to her father’s career as a mining engineer, her family moved many times during her childhood. Donoghue completed high school at H. B. Beal Secondary School in London, Ontario. There, under the instruction of local artist Herb Ariss, she commenced her formal studies in art and received a Special Art Diploma in 1972.

From early in her artistic career, Donoghue was interested in portraiture and figure work, although at that time both had a limited presence in Canadian art schools. Donoghue’s art practice focused almost solely on portrait-painting, and she became one of the country’s most distinguished portraitists. Her work was known for its use of colour, with paint at times applied in multiple thin layers to achieve thickness.

Donoghue’s first solo exhibition, entitled “Smaller Works,” took place in 1975 and was hosted by the Richard E. Crouch Resources Centre in London. Ontario. Between 1973 and 1999, Donoghue held over 20 solo exhibitions, and her work appeared in numerous group exhibitions across Canada, America, and the United Kingdom.

In addition to private and corporate collections, Lynn Donoghue’s work is a part of gallery collections across Canada, including: Mount St. Vincent University Art Gallery in Halifax, Nova Scotia: the Vancouver Art Gallery; the Ontario Legislature, Toronto, Ontario; and the Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Oshawa, Ontario: as well as Museum London and McIntosh Gallery, Western University, in London, Ontario. Her work is also in the collection of the National Museum of Botswana, in Gamborone, Botswana.

Lynn Donoghue was an educator in the arts, holding positions across Ontario from the 1970s to the 1990s, including the University of Guelph; York University, Toronto; Sheridan College, Oakville; the Ontario College of Art, Toronto (now the Ontario College of Art and Design); Sir Sandford Fleming College, Haliburton School of Fine Arts, Haliburton; and early in her career was involved in children’s programming at a precursor to Museum London.

In 1991, Donoghue was elected an academician (RCA) of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, and in 2002 was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in recognition of her service to her community.

During her career, Lynn Donoghue lived in Toronto, New York City, and Bath, England. She passed away in Toronto, Ontario, in November 2003.


Biography by Natalka Duncan and Luvneet K. Rana

 

SOURCES

Atkinson, Nathalie. “Art for the artist’s sake: ‘If we were musicians, we’d have a concert.
This is our concert.’”  The National Post, January 10, 2004.

Burnett, David. “Lynn Donoghue: Presence and Memory.” Canadian Art, Fall 1985.

The Centre for Contemporary Canadian Art (CCCA) Canadian Art Database,
Concordia University Fine Arts. “Lynn Donoghue: Bio.” http://ccca.concordia.ca/bios/donoghue_bio.html.

The Centre for Contemporary Canadian Art (CCCA) Canadian Art Database,
Concordia University Fine Arts. “Lynn Donoghue: Curriculum Vitae.”
http://ccca.concordia.ca/cv/english/donoghue-cv.html.

The Cult of Personality: Portraits by Lynn Donoghue. Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery, 1984, Exhibition Catalogue.

Harris, Marjorie. “Lynn Donoghue.” The Financial Post Magazine, August 1984.
Via The Centre for Contemporary Canadian Art (CCCA) Canadian Art Database,
Concordia University Fine Arts. http://ccca.concordia.ca/bios/donoghue_bio.html.

Hume, Christopher. “Portrait of (middle-class) artist as practitioner of portraiture.”
The Toronto Star, September 16, 1993.

Lawlor, Allison. “Lynn Donoghue. 1953-2003: A painter of real people; Toronto artist sought to get beneath a subject’s veneer to achieve a ‘luminous presence.’ ”
The Globe and Mail, December 4, 2003.

Legacy.com.  “Lynn Donoghue.”
https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/theglobeandmail/obituary.aspx?n=lynn-donoghue&pid=189773417

Heath, Terrence. “The Vibrant Worker: Lynn Donoghue’s Recent Paintings.”
BorderCrossings 19 (no. 4), November 2000. Via The Centre for Contemporary Canadian Art (CCCA) Canadian Art Database, Concordia University Fine Arts. http://ccca.concordia.ca/c/writing/h/heath/hea030t.html.

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McIntosh Gallery, Red Doors (Thumbnail)

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