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Arthur John Ensor, 1905 – 1995

Born in Wales, Canadian artist Arthur John Ensor studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence, Italy. He then studied in England, at the Polytechnic School of Art in London and at the Royal College of Art, before graduating with two diplomas; in Mural Painting and in Art History, from the University of London.

In 1967, ‘Summers Store’ was chosen for the 50 cent stamp to celebrate Canada’s Centennial. Here, Ensor depicts the snow covered rail alongside grain elevators, those ubiquitous prairie icons, their bright colour muted by the prairie sized grey sky. The Victoria Daily Times remarked that it was “…a little surprising to find that an Englishman has expressed Canada in paint with such vigor and sense of vastness, a feeling for the character of the country, its people and activities, scarcely excelled by any native born Canadian.”
Ensor completed a portfolio of 150 paintings, 90 of which were purchased years later by Esso Resources for their Permanent Collection. Ensor also completed an impressive series of industrial paintings, murals and illustrations for the London Science Museum in England, the Empire Marketing Board, Shell Corporation, Rhodesian Railways and Imperial Airways.