Canadian Artist Florence Helena McGillivray

Canadian Artist Florence Helena McGillivray

Canadian Artist Florence Helena McGillivrayCanadian Artist Florence Helena McGillivray



Florence Helena McGillivray 1864 -1938

An extraordinary Canadian artist, a woman ahead of her time, a prolific painter, dedicated educator, who was influential in early twentieth century  art, a contributor to the Canadian modernists  movement, who associated with and swayed the Group of Seven, she mentored Tom Thomson. Tom said "She was the best".

"Pinegrove" 1914, Oil, Signed, private collection


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Her paintings, her travels, the people and places that touched her life, and her achievements. Discover new paintings and the stories of her life.

"Gaspe Village" 1919, Oil, Signed, private collection


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Find out about exhibitions, news items. products, web links and any current events that are the legacy of this multi talented artist. New photos of paintings and stories will be added regularly.

"Coca Workers" 1925,Signed, private collection 

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Available Now

Order your copy today

The new biography on Florence McGillivray is available now. The hardcover copies of the new  book  are available on this website through Paypal, the same process as The Collection of Works by Florence Helena McGillivray or by contacting W.C. Allen through the comments section of the website where you can leave your email and ask questions, or contact Bill Allen directly at arrange an E-transfer and they will be shipped immediately. They will also be available at the locations where talks and exhibitions will be held for the The Florence McGillivray Project upcoming tour. ( see exhibitions in the Menu for more details. E books, paperbacks and hardcovers are  available online ( print on demand basis) at,, and Be the first to get your book by going to the book order page on the site, or contacting us in the comments section below .Click on BOOK in the menu bar above for Pay Pal orders.

Stay tuned

New paintings, stories, and events will be posted  regularly in the chapters of this site.

Book Reviews

March 30, 2019 Biography of a Canadian pioneering woman artist, that just may be coming into her due, Entertaining, while showing great research and scholarship. If you have an interest in Canadian art, this could be, the book of the year for you!

  Amazon .ca customer review

June 30, 2019 Bill Allen has done all Canadians a service by bringing into the public realm the story of artist Florence McGillivray in his book "She is One Of the Best." his title underscores the significance of the remarkable woman, since it was an assessment made by one of the best known Canadian painters of the early twentieth century, Tom Thomson.

Thomson was not alone in his praise. Allen reveals how McGillivray developed and broadened her talents and in the process gained an important place in the art world - and the respect of many of her contemporaries. Yet, today McGillivray is not well-known and she is not well represented in literature. One hopes that this book, along with Allen's earlier publication "A Collection of Works by Florence Helena McGillivray", and Allen's website "The Florence McGillivray Project" at will remedy the oversight. She deserves the recognition.

Ian Hundey, Senior Lecturer Emeritus, University of Toronto.

August 4, 2019 She is one of the Best

I really enjoyed reading about the life and work of Florence McGillivray. It took me back to the first half of the twentieth century in Ontario, when life and the landscape were so different than it is now. I love the way each chapter begins with some historical context, to give us an idea what was going on in the world while Florence was living her life, painting her beautiful paintings and visiting and nurturing her family and friends. I came away from the book filled with respect for her. She pursued her art relentlessly, traveling the world and painting wherever she went. She comes across as an indomitable spirit, devoted to her art/ This is a lovely companion book to "A Collection of Works by Florence Helena McGillivray," also by William Allen. I sat with both books open at once, looking at paintings as I read the detailed descriptions of when they were painted and where. Bill Allen has created a meticulous study of one woman and her art, and he is to be commended for his vision and determination in bringing McGillivray back into the public eye. Where she belongs.

Author Charis Cotter


Last chance


This limited edition archive that is signed and numbered and contains over 800 images of art and crafts, sketches, drawings and paintings by the influential artist Florence McGillivray. The coffee table style volume also contains biographical and professional information as well as exhibition histories. The limited edition print run was only 500 copies. Get your copy while supplies last. Click on the BOOK chapter in the menu bar above for Pay Pal order forms.

Order now

There are less than 100 copies left of this limited edition book to get your copy you can order it from the book chapter in the menu on this website through Paypal, or contact Bill Allen directly  then using E-Transfer to pay for the book ( $95.00 plus $ 20.00 shipping. The book is no longer available from online retailers.

Book Reviews

This gorgeous book, a well-designed, captivating and comprehensive collection of works about an important Ontario Artist. Author Allen has spent many painstaking years in taking and compiling of these hundreds of photographs, and the result is a definitive presentation of the work of a prolific and influential artist whose work has been widely recognized in galleries and private collections and certainly deserves to be celebrated in this manner. customer review

This is a beautifully produced book. Florence McGillivray's work is of particular interest to those with connection to the Gatineau Valley in Western Quebec. Although this under-recognized Canadian artist lived in the Toronto area, she often visited family members who had moved to Wakefield, Quebec. Mr Allen's book of McGillivray's collected works includes some lovely paintings of historical landscapes of the Gatineau valley. A recommended buy for all art lovers. customer review

The book offers a fresh and almost encyclopedic account of the life and work of the little know artist, Florence McGillivray. It shifts focus from Tom Thomson to a women artist whom he called "one of the best."

Joan Murray Art Historian and Curator

This book is a delight. Florence McGillivray's paintings reveal one women's unique vision and interpretation of the world around her. Her work is captivating and vivid, and very personal. I love this book! I want to keep turning the pages again and again. She was such an accomplished painter, and she devoted her life to her art at a time when women were expected to marry and have children. I have deep admiration for her and her work, and I am very impressed with this beautifully crafted book. Congratulations Bill Allen for bringing Florence McGillivray to public attention once more. She deserves to be honoured as one of Canada's most brilliant Artists.

Author Charis Cotter

The Florence McGillivray Project proudly offers the following

W.C. (Bill) Allen is available for Power Point Talks and discussions of Exhibitions of the works of Florence McGillivray

You can contact him for further information at or 416 988 4934.

Any institutions, associations, clubs, or art groups, please feel free to contact Bill for more details.

Bill has spoken at many venues including the Women's Art Association of Canada, The Heliconian Club, The Arts and Letters Club, The Gatineau Valley Historical Society, The Whitby Historical Society and The Whitby Library, to name a few locations. Over the last few years he has guest curated three exhibitions of the artists works

The Next lecture will be held March 17,2020  7.00 pm

Sponsored by the Oshawa Historical Society at the

Arts Resource Centre, 45 Queen Street in Oshawa.

This lecture has been rescheduled to April 21,2020 due to Virus protocols