Iconic Toronto Paintings

15 iconic paintings of Toronto worth knowing about

Toronto's depiction in paintings doesn't seem to get much attention, particularly these days as we're inundated with photographic images of the city at an astonishing pace. Yet, even as Toronto is not a place with an enormous catalogue of artwork devoted to it (compared to say Paris or New York), there's a rich artistic history to be found if you care to look.

The last time I visited this subject, I wanted to draw attention to Edith G. Firth's Toronto in Art, a book which is sadly no longer in print. This collection expands on the previous one by adding significant works by John DeRinzy, William Kurelek, Peter Doig, Brian Kipping, and two of Toronto's most prolific plein air painters, Jerry Campbell and Michael Pieczonka.

Take a tour of Toronto through the eyes of a painter.

20111122-Lawren-Harris-Houses-St.Patrick-Street.jpg

Lawren Harris, House on St. Patrick St. 1922

20111122-Tom-Roberts-City-Lights.jpg

Tom Roberts, City Lights 1945

201518-ttc-subway-construction-john-derinzy-1950.jpg

John DeRinzy, Men excavating timber-lined trench 1950

201518-behind-massey-street-albert-franck-1966.jpg

Albert Franck, Behind Massey Street 1966

20111123-a-and-a-clark-mcdougal-1969 (1).jpg

Clark McDougal, A&A Music 1969

20111123-ondaatje-hearn-1974.jpg

Kim Ondaatje, The Hearn 1974

201518-wm-kurelek-balsam-ave-toronto-after-heavy-snowfall1.jpg

William Kurelek, Balsam Avenue After Heavy Snowfall

201518-william-k.jpg

William Kurelek, And in Harvest of Our Mere Humanism

20111123-les-tait-1182-bloorW-1982.jpg

Les Tait, 1182 Bloor Street West, 1982

201518-peter-doig-1999.jpg

Peter Doig, Country-Rock (Wing-Mirror), 1999

201518-peter-harris-Dundas_Garden_w-2012.jpg

Peter Harris, Dundas Garden 2005

20101120-Captain-Johns.jpg

Michael Pieczonka, Captain John's, 2000s

201518-brian-kipping-union-station-6-58-2005.jpg

Brian Kipping, Union Station 6:58pm 2005

201518-jerry-campbell-skyline-2014.jpg

Jerry Campbell, Toronto Skyline 2014

What's your favourite painting of Toronto? Share your contributions in the comments.

Lead painting by Walter Coucill (Eaton Centre Excavation 1975)


Latest Videos



Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in Arts

Founder of Joe Fresh and Club Monaco opening a massive new creative space in Toronto

Canadian author transcribes Cree story that could've been lost for the next generation

Toronto is getting a towering water screen that will rise out of Lake Ontario

Several road closures are planned in Toronto for Nuit Blanche 2022

The top 25 exhibits to see at Nuit Blanche Toronto 2022

Toronto's Just For Laughs fest has just started and there are already problems with tickets

Massive city-wide arts festival from Berlin and Paris is coming to Toronto

Massive structure made of picnic tables is being built under a Toronto highway