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Friday, 27 November 2015

Tranquility of Winter

Tranquility of Winter, acrylic, 11"x 14"


Blog 47

The first snow is on the ground. While I sit here and write this week's blog I can see the beautifully transformed landscape. I know that this snow will not last but it has magically transformed the subdued landscape into a bright and peaceful place.

I like this time of the year, when more and more houses are getting dressed up with cheerful Christmas decorations. Every night when I drive past the beautifully lit Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, I can hardly wait until it will finally open the doors again on November 28 for its yearly Christmas activities.

The little museum village looks just like a place Santa would love to stay in, and for everyone who is wondering, he is indeed in one of the houses waiting for the nice kids to ask him for a gift for Christmas.

Thinking of the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, made me remember my painting “Tranquility of Winter”, which was a commission piece for my father-in-law. He wanted to give a winter painting to a friend in Germany. The building in the painting is the Dupuis House, in which Eva Dupuis lived on St. Joseph Boulevard in Cumberland until her death in 1983. Eva is a descendent of François Dupuis, a war veteran of the War of 1812. He arrived in the area in the1830s, and many consider him the founder of Orléans. The François Dupuis Recreation Centre was named in his honour.

After Ms. Dupuis’ death, the house was moved to the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum. The house was built in 1820 and was hardly changed over the years. It was heated with coal and wood. The only washroom was an outhouse. A well in the backyard was used to supply the water. Ms. Dupuis did not even have electricity. Instead of in a fridge, she kept her food in an icebox.

When I look at the snow-covered house in my painting, it seems like a monument of a different area, when time was moving slower. It seems to be a relic of history which was preserved by the cold to be studied by generations to come.

This Christmas season, the house is decorated with lots of Christmas lights which makes it, and all the other buildings in the museum, sparkle like stars in the dark night.

The Vintage Village of Lights will officially open on Saturday, November 28 with the Tree Lighting Ceremony. The museum will be open from 4:30 pm to 8 pm.

On Sunday, November 29 and on the Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays before Christmas, the museum will be open from 3 pm to 8 pm. For more information you can go to http://ottawa.ca/en/liveculture/museums/cumberlandmuseum.

For our family, visiting the Vintage Village of Lights has become a Christmas tradition. It brings moments of quietness into the hectic season. It is definitely worth a visit for both young and old. Maybe, it will also become a new tradition for you.



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