Brymner, William

Technique: Oil, charcoal


William Brymner was born in Greenock, Scotland, in 1885, and died in Wallasey, Cheshire , in 1925.

Following schooling in Richmond, Quebec, and at the Conseil des arts et manufactures in Montreal, William Brymner, RCA, focused on architecture. In 1878, when he was in Paris to study architecture, he decided to focus on painting. In 1886, he taught painting at the Art Association of Montreal. Brymner, who is admired for the delicacy of his art, painted portraits and interiors in a figurative style, in addition to murals and watercolours on silk.

He is considered to be the first great painting teacher to have worked in Canada. He is admired for his respect towards academic training and his great receptiveness towards the talents of others.

Brymner painted and taught with an awareness and openness to various schools of painting. In many ways he serves as a bridge between the styles of French academic painting, the Barbizon school, and the newer techniques of Impressionism. Admired by his students, Brymner has had a major influence on the development of painting in Canada.

Media coverage

  • Magazin’Art, Fall 2003 edition, pg. 149-152