Alumni profiles: 1940s

Tom Hodgson (AOCA, 1946)

Hodgson (1924-2006) began his career as a commercial designer for Odeon Theatres and in advertising agencies. He was a member of Painters Eleven and his complex paintings have been described as energetic and accumulative, with a multitude of references and associations that require a direct response to immediate experience.  He was influenced by New York Abstract Expressionists Willem de Kooning and Franz Kline. He was an Olympic paddler in 1952 and 1956, and then taught painting at OCAD U from 1968 to 1972.

William McElcheran (AOCA, 1947)

McElcheran (1927-1999) studied under Emmanuel Han while at OCAD U (then OCA). He earned a painting scholarship and later the Lieutenant-Governor’s Medal. He began his career as a craftsman of liturgical art, later working as a designer of church and university buildings for Bruce, Brown and Brisley architects.  His large sculptural commissions include works for Toronto’s City Hall, Water Park Place, and Dundas Street Subway Station. He is best known for his bronze sculpture series, “Businessmen”.  McElcheran also taught at OCAD U from 1960 to 1967.

Harold Town (AOCA, 1944)

Town (1924-1990) studied at OCAD U (then OCA) from 1942 to 1944. His highly personal approach to abstract expressionism comprises a succession of subjects which require varied and imaginative responses from both artist and viewer. He began his prolific career as an accomplished illustrator for magazine and advertising agencies. He was an active member of Painters Eleven during the 1950s, and never stopped experimenting with painting, printmaking, collage, drawing, and sculpture.  His “single autographic prints” of the 1950s are evidence of his highly refined sense of design.

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