Georges Delfosse, besides painting exquisite portraits, also painted numerous religious and historical murals for churches in Montreal, like those on the magnificent ceiling for the Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament left and below today a protected Quebec Historic Property.

Right Georges in 1890.

And he could paint horses and habitants with the best of them.


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Delfosse Page 23

Great Canadian Art & Artists

Marie-Joseph Georges Delfosse - 1869-1939

Great Canadian Heritage Treasure

A Mystery Gentleman!

At a recent auction of a well-known Canadian antique collector's estate, one picture attracted little attention, as anonymous portraits often do.

This one was simply called "A Gentleman" in the catalogue because the curator, whose strong suit was not history, did not recognize the subject.

And neither did anyone else...

Other people should have paid more close attention. After all it was a huge oil on board, 20 x 26, and it was painted and signed by Georges Marie Joseph Delfosse (1869-1939), a noted Canadian painter.


King Edward VII, 1902

Orig. oil on canvas 1902 - Image Size - 20" x 26"
Found - Toronto, ON
Signed & dated Georges Delfosse, Mai 1902

But even after a week of previewing, when his turn came at auction, still no one recognized that the "anonymous gentleman" was, after all, King Edward VII, ruler of the British Empire after the death of Queen Victoria.

Besides the uncanny likeness, there was another dead giveaway that went unnoticed, by the curator and buyers alike - the oil was clearly signed "Mai 1902." That was, of course, the year that Edward was crowned King, the first coronation in the British Empire in 65 years. The event was slated for June, a month later.

It was a cause for a super celebration around the "red parts" of the world. Clearly Delfosse was caught up in the historic moment. He painted the "Sovereign King of Canada," the month before the coronation was due to be held.

But it was all lost on the auction literati.

So Edward went cheap!

Left Georges as he looked in 1900 when he painted the portrait.