Robbie “Kurt” Lavack is still going strong on his WWII memoirscontinued
2015 WORK IN PROGRESS
The book about Anna Skrainka and her family is based on her 36 page memoir. Chapters take readers through her life in Vienna and Hamburg before Terezin.
Walking with Oma and Alison Pick
The mentorship project with novelist-poet Alison Pick (www.alisonpick.com) through the Humber College of Creative Writing (www.humber.ca/scapa/ ) accompanied me to Africa and Tristan da Cunha. I enjoyed having the electronic company of a young author who’s written about the Holocaust and more. I started the important move towards the creative part of ‘creative non-fiction’. The original manuscript, written in art history mode, shortened and picked up much-needed dialogue. Hell, the characters all started to speak at once and I’m still sorting them out!
I’m currently in editing mode, hoping to have a version to float by literary agents later this year. Here’s the first chapter with SOME of Alison’s comments still there. Since I acted on her suggestions, you’ll find things missing. Read on to see how it works because you too might want to take Humber’s web-course, the Creative Writing Mentorship Program. SAMPLE CHAPTER Word | pdf
Walking with Oma - The Skrainka family story during three centuries on three continents is told by a granddaughter who follows her Oma into history and into hell itself.continued
April 25, 2017, 5-8 p.m. “Angie’s Official Launch” at theHeliconian Club,
35 Hazelton Ave., Toronto, M5R 2E3. With Neil Lehto, Barry Brodie, Bianca Lakoseljac and Guest of Honour, Virginia Eichhorn. EVENTBRITE
May 21, 2:30 p.m. “How Leith Became Home: an afternoon with Angie Littlefield, author of The Thomsons of Durham: Tom Thomson’s Family Heritage and Tom Thomson’s Fine Kettle of Friends: biography, history, art and food” Historic Leith Church, 418134 Tom Thomson Lane, Leith, N0H 1V0
May 24, 7 p.m. “Tom Thomson @The Station”, Station Gallery, 1450 Henry Street, Whitby, L1N 0A8
May 27 "Meet the Author at the PRAC tent at Artfest" Sat. May 27th,
11-5 p.m., Esplanade Park, Pickering
July 11, 6-8 p.m. “Tom Thomson Returns to Pickering: Celebrate Canada 150 and Commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Tom Thomson’s Death with the PineRidge Arts Council and Friends”, Pickering Central Library, One The Esplanade, Pickering L1V 6K7. Also with sculptor Ruth Abernethy and music by Cathy Schnippering and Kevin Byrne.
July 16th, "Tasty Tidbits from Tom Thomson's Life: Author Angie Littlefield talks about her latest book Tom Thomson's Fine Kettle of Friends" Sunday July 16, 1 p.m.,The Tom Thomson Memorial Art Gallery, 840 1st Ave W, Owen Sound, N4K 4K4.
November 21, 10 am Scarborough Probus Club Royal Canadian Legion Branch 258 (south entrance), 45 Lawson Road, Scarborough.
More dates and locations to come for: Algonquin Park, Chatham, Comber and maybe Oshawa, St. Catharines and Ottawa.
Organizations, including book clubs, interested in a free author’s talk should contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Advance Praise for Tom Thomson’s Fine Kettle of Friends
Tom Thomson scholar, Joan Murray, retired Algonquin Park Naturalist Ron Tozer, film maker Nancy Lang and sculptor Ruth Abernethy are four of 12 advance readers who weigh in on Littlefield’s book. The news of all 12 is positive but here is a sampling: "What a delightful book! A great idea! Thank you for doing such excellent work." Joan Murray, art historian and Tom Thomson scholar; “This engagingly-written book presents well-researched narratives that enhance our understanding of Tom Thomson through facts and possibilities concerning his life. A good example is H.B. “Harry” Jackson accompanying Tom on his first visit to Algonquin in May 1912, a trip which was the initial spark in Thomson’s intense artistic love affair with the Park.” Ron Tozer, Algonquin Park Naturalist (retired) and author of The Birds of Algonquin Park; “Utterly enjoyable reading! The people and places in Tom Thomson’s life come alive in Littlefield’s richly detailed stories. Truly fabulous.” Nancy Lang, researcher and co-producer for White Pine Pictures’ West Wind: The Vision of Tom Thomson, and .”What struck me was the amazing mobility of the Thomson family and their friends. They were peripheral, or central, to so many endeavours in our young country. Ms. Littlefield has shown us life in early Canada with a much richer palette than we might have imagined. Do join us for dinner!” Ruth Abernethy, sculptor and author of Life and Bronze
Thanks to the Relatives!
I received help with research and photo permissions from descendants connected to Tom Thomson, his friends and relatives. It was a pleasure emailing with: Jane Cauffiel, a descendant of Arthur Lismer; Sylvia Telford, a descendant of the Hayhursts of Canoe Lake and Paul Gauthier, son of Joachim Gauthier, a friend of Franklin Carmichael. They generously provided photo permissions. I visited with Paul Simon, a descendant of Tom’s female friend Elizabeth McCarnen, Jaffray Rutherford, a descendant of the Thomsons’ neighbours in Leith and David Ainslie, a descendant of the Ainslies of Comber, a family into which Tom Thomson’s nephew married. Each person told fascinating family stories that enrich the knowledge we have of Tom Thomson’s life.
Helen Young, Margaret McLaughlin, Kay Morrison and David Thomson are direct Thomson or Matheson descendants. They were incredibly supportive with either Fine Kettle of Friends,The Thomsons of Durham, or both books. Their knowledge and resources are invaluable.
Thanks to all the relatives who help inform the reading public about the fascinating life of Tom Thomson, his friends and neighbours! Thanks to them for enhancing Canada’s history.
From PineRidge Artscene: Launch of Marangi Editions
Mary Cook, PRAC’s media guru and all-round helpful person, recently partnered with author Angie Littlefield to establish Marangi Editions. The first official book for the new imprint launches spring 2017 at the Heliconian Hall in the Yorkville area of Toronto. Look for Tom Thomson’s Fine Kettle of Friends: biography, history, art and food.
Angie and Mary have worked together before. They produced seven years of free educational material for Remembrance Day--available at all times on readingandremembrance.ca. They created Tom Thomson’s Toronto Neighbourhoods, a free e-book on angielittlefield.com in 2010. That book is now in its second, improved edition in e-book and print formats. The print version of Tom Thomson’s Toronto Neighbourhoods is available in a bundle with the 2005 book developed for the Durham West Arts Centre: The Thomsons of Durham: Tom Thomson’s Family Heritage.
Tom Thomson’s Fine Kettle of Friends will occupy Mary and Angie for most of 2017 but there will be further projects under the new imprint. “Mary’s graphic design work is excellent and we work well together as a team,” says Littlefield. “We’ll always find projects that interest us.”
The 100th anniversary of Tom Thomson’s death in 2017 will focus a great deal of attention on Canada’s iconic artist. Ontario Tourism is supporting Cultural Tourism related to Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven in 2017. Parry Sound and Huntsville will be two Thomson ‘destinations’. Ontario Art Galleries are also preparing special Tom Thomson programs for 2017. The City of Pickering will highlight that Tom was born in Claremont.
Angie will speak at the Pickering Township Historical Society on Sept. 12, 2017.
Vernissage le vendredi 3 octobre 2015
en présence des artistes
Angelika Hoerle’s Heritage
Out Take One:
The Forebears aroused Polish-born, Luxembourg historian Marc Murzynski to investigate Angelika Hoerle’s “Fick” roots in what was at the time of her ancestors a Prussian Province. Murzynski Born in Massow, the hometown of Angelika Hoerle’s father and grandfather, plans a monograph on the former inhabitants of Pomerania who left or were displaced between 1900-1950. more
Angelika Hoerle’s Heritage
Out Take Two:
“The Developing Artists 1912-1914”
Things started to percolate for Angelika and Willy Fick in 1912. Willy began evening and Sunday courses in drawing and architectural drafting at Cologne’s Kunstgewerbe School. Angelika did all his assignments with him. more
My continuing 15 seconds of fame in Tom Thomson film West Wind: The Vision of Tom Thomson, a film by Michele Hozer and Peter Raymont, screened at the TIFF Bell Lightbox in 2012, followed by Q&A with the filmmakers.
The film was also screened at the Lakefield Literary Festival July 20-23, 2012. Catch my 15 seconds as a talking head, filmed in the Leith Church and the Thomson homestead, Rose Hill. The film is lovingly shot and brilliantly executed. Research kudos go to Nancy Lang and Rebecca Middleton—sleuths par excellence. I love comparing notes with them.
Willy on Wikipedia
Thanks to the Wikipedia expertise of author Zoë S. Roy (Calls Across the Pacific, Inanna 2015; The Long March Home, Inanna, 2011 and Butterfly Tears, Inanna 2009) my great-uncle Willy Fick has a fantastic-looking Wikipedia entry. Check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willy_Fick Read about Fick’s past in Cologne, Germany where he was a dada artist and also read about “A Dadaist in Whitby”. ... more