Paraskeva Clark Life & Work by Christine Boyanoski

Paraskeva Clark has been well represented in exhibitions, print sources, and film. During her life, she participated enthusiastically in the annual society shows and in many international exhibitions. Her paintings were also included in group exhibitions and showcased in solo exhibitions. Two monographs have been published about her, and in recent years her work has been considered in scholarly collections and exhibition catalogues. She is also the subject of a documentary film, and her writings and interviews are available in a few archives in Canada.

Selected Group Exhibitions

Opening for a Canadian Group of Painters exhibition, Art Gallery of Toronto, 1953. From left: A.Y. Jackson, Paraskeva Clark, and Jack Nichols.


Rody Kenny Courtice, Isabel McLaughlin, Kathleen Daly, Yvonne McKague, and Paraskeva Clark, J. Merritt Malloney Galleries, Toronto, ON.

1939 –40

Paraskeva Clark, Carl Schaefer, Caven Atkins, and David Milne, Art Gallery of Toronto, ON.


Paraskeva Clark and Carl Schaefer, Art Gallery of Toronto, ON.

Paraskeva Clark and Henri Masson: Paintings, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, QC.


Paraskeva Clark and Ben Clark, Arts and Letters Club, Toronto, ON.


Canadian Painting in the Thirties, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, ON.

From Women’s Eyes: Women Painters in Canada, Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, ON.


A Collector’s Vision: J.S. McLean and Modern Painting in Canada, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto.


Canvas of War: Painting the Canadian Experience, 1914–1945, Canadian War Museum, Ottawa, ON, and Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto.


A Vital Force: The Canadian Group of Painters, Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, ON, and the Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Oshawa, ON.


The Artist Herself: Self-Portraits by Canadian Historical Women Artists, Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, ON, and Art Gallery of Hamilton, ON.

Selected International Exhibitions

1936 –39

Empire Exhibition, Johannesburg and other venues in South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand: Exhibition of Contemporary Canadian Painting (“Southern Dominions”).


Exhibition of Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture by Artists of the British Empire Overseas (“The Coronation”), Royal Institute Galleries, London, UK.


A Century of Canadian Art, Tate Gallery, London, UK.

1938 –39

Great Lakes Exhibition, Albright Gallery, Buffalo, NY.


New York World’s Fair: Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour, Canadian Group of Painters, Canadian Society of Graphic Artists.


Aspects of Contemporary Canadian Painting, Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA.


Canadian Art, 1760–1943, Gallery of Fine Art, Yale University, New Haven, CT.

Pintura Canadense Contemporanea, Museu Nacional de Belas Artes, Rio de Janeiro, BR.


Forty Years of Canadian Painting from Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven to the Present Day, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA.

Solo Exhibitions


Canadian Aid to Russia: Exhibition and Sale of Paintings by Paraskeva Clark, Picture Loan Society, Toronto, ON.


Picture Loan Society, Toronto, ON.


The New Laing Gallery, Toronto, ON.


Victoria College, University of Toronto, ON.


Macdonald College, McGill University, Montreal, QC.

Hart House, University of Toronto, ON


Paraskeva Clark: Paintings and Drawings, Dalhousie Art Gallery, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS.


A Window on Paraskeva Clark, The Ottawa Art Gallery, ON.

Panya Clark Espinal’s installation “Re Appearances,” in the exhibition Out of Place, Vancouver Art Gallery, 1993, featured seven works by Paraskeva Clark. 

Society Exhibitions

Opening of the exhibition of the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour at the Art Gallery of Toronto, 1949. Paraskeva Clark was president of the society that year. From left: H. Walker, Philip Clark, Paraskeva Clark, the Honourable Dana Porter, and Dorothy Porter.

These shows were important to Clark as a symbol of her professionalism and acceptance into the Canadian art world. She showed her work in a number of annual society exhibitions throughout her career.

Art Association of Montreal: 1933, 1939, 1940, 1943, 1947, 1954–57, 1960.

Art Gallery of Hamilton: 1948–49, 1951–52, 1955, 1957–60, 1962, 1964–69, 1971–73.

Canadian Group of Painters: 1933, 1936–37, 1939, 1942, 1944, 1945/6, 1947/8, 1949–50, 1952, 1954, 1956, 1956/7, 1957–63, 1965–67.

Canadian National Exhibition: 1933–34, 1936–39, 1947, 1949–51, 1953–56, 1958–60.

Canadian Society of Graphic Artists: 1937–38.

Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour: 1935–65.

Ontario Society of Artists: 1933, 1941–43, 1946–47, 1949, 1953–62.

Royal Canadian Academy: 1932, 1948, 1955–61, 1963, 1966.

Women’s Committee of the Art Gallery of Toronto:
1948–59, 1961.


Two monographs have been published about Paraskeva Clark, and her work has been considered in several collections of articles, exhibition catalogues, and theses on a variety of subjects.

Books and Gallery Publications

Lind, Jane. Perfect Red: The Life of Paraskeva Clark. Toronto: Cormorant Books, 2009. 

MacLachlan, Mary E. Paraskeva Clark: Paintings and Drawings. Halifax: Dalhousie University, 1982. This exhibition catalogue contains an extensive exhibition history and bibliography up to 1977.


Anreus, Alejandro, et al., eds. The Social and the Real: Political Art of the 1930s in the Western Hemisphere. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania University Press, 2006.

Paraskeva Clark’s Myself, 1933, featured on the cover of the catalogue for Canadian Painting in the Thirties (1975).

Boutilier, Alicia. A Vital Force: The Canadian Group of Painters. Catalogue of an exhibition for the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, ON, and other venues, 2013–14.

Carney, Laura Senechal. “Modern Art, the Local, and the Global, c. 1930–50.” In The Visual Arts in Canada: The Twentieth Century, edited by Anne Whitelaw et al., 99–141. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Gewurtz, Michelle Sara. “Three Women/Three Margins: Political Engagement and the Art of Claude Cahun, Jeanne Mammen, and Paraskeva Clark.” PhD diss., University of Leeds, 2010.

Hudson, Anna. “Art and Social Progress: The Toronto Community of Painters, 1933–1950.” PhD diss., University of Toronto, 1997.

Huneault, Kristina, and Janice Anderson. Rethinking Professionalism: Women and Art in Canada, 1850–1970. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2012.

Niergarth, Kirk. The Dignity of Every Human Being: New Brunswick Artists and Canadian Culture between the Great Depression and the Cold War. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2015.

O’Rourke, Kathryn. “Labours and Love: Issues of Domesticity and Marginalization in the Works of Paraskeva Clark.” MA diss., Concordia University, 1995.

Suleiman, Susan Rubin, ed. Exile and Creativity: Signposts, Travelers, Outsiders, Backward Glances. Durham, NC, and London, UK: Duke University Press, 1998.

Primary Resources

Paraskeva in her studio, recalling her time in Paris. Still from the documentary Portrait of the Artist as an Old Lady, directed by Gail Singer, 1982.

(in Russian); information on many Russian émigré artists according to country of destination.

Canadian Women Artists History Initiative Artist Database: Clark, Paraskeva.


Dorothy H. Hoover Library, OCAD University website, Artists as Writers: Clark, Paraskeva. Provides lists of Clark’s writings, interviews, exhibition catalogues (only those with text up to 2006), and links to other sites.

National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives.

E.P. Taylor Research Library & Archives, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto.

Paraskeva and Philip T. Clark Fonds, Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, ON. Finding aid.


In 1982, four years before Clark’s death, the accomplished filmmaker Gail Singer directed a documentary about this artist.

Portrait of the Artist as an Old Lady, VHS video recording. Directed by Gail Singer. Ottawa, ON: National Film Board of Canada, 1982. 27 min. Available on DVD.