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Children's Nonfiction Painting

Meet the Group of Seven

by (author) David Wistow, Kelly McKinley & Art Gallery of Ontario

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2019
Painting, Cultural Heritage, Art
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2005
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 1999
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2019
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 8 to 12
  • Grade: 3 to 7
  • Reading age: 8 to 12


In the early twentieth century, a group of Toronto artists became friends. They shared a love of traveling and exploring Canada's landscape. Their paintings were very different from the art of the time, capturing not just how the landscape looked, but how it made the artists feel as well. In 1920, they exhibited their work together for the first time, calling themselves the Group of Seven. While some people were excited by their use of bright colors and rough brushstrokes, others were horrified by their strange styles. It took years for appreciation of their work to grow. But today, the Group of Seven are some of Canada's best-loved artists.

Just in time for the 100th anniversary of the Group of Seven's first exhibition, here's a reissue of a must-have reference, produced in collaboration with the Art Gallery of Ontario. Filled with illustrations, photographs and stunning reproductions of more than forty masterpieces, the book describes how the group formed, how and where they painted, their influence on Canadian art and more. It offers a perfect introduction to critical thinking about visual arts and biographies of artists. It's also an excellent social studies resource on Canadian heritage and history.

Original Group of Seven artists: Franklin Carmichael, Lawren Harris, A. Y. Jackson, Frank Johnston, Arthur Lismer, J. E. H. MacDonald and Frederick H. Varley.

About the authors

Educator and artist David Wistow is an interpretive planner emeritus at the Art Gallery of Ontario. He is also the author of several books for adults, including Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven. He lives in Toronto, Ontario.

David Wistow's profile page

Kelly McKinley is a Canadian art museum educator who now works as the deputy director at the Oakland Museum of California. She has spent almost 30 years crafting programs that nurture a love of art and museums in people of all ages. She lives in San Francisco, California.

Kelly McKinley's profile page

Art Gallery of Ontario's profile page


  • Short-listed, Red Cedar Book Award
  • Short-listed, Hackmatack Children's Choice Book Award
  • Runner-up, Information Book Award, Children's Literature Roundtables of Canada
  • Short-listed, Silver Birch Award, Ontario Library Association

Editorial Reviews

[The Group of Seven's] adventurous stories will intrigue young art lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

School Library Journal

A wonderful introduction to the men who are perhaps Canada's most famous artists.

The Lethbridge Herald

A concise, colorful introduction ...