Accompanying another Ralph article on life in the Canadian north woods, In a Stiff Current is an excellent example of Remington’s mature technique as an illustrator. According to Ralph, the painting shows a party of voyageurs, lineal descendants of the coureurs des bois, dressed in flannel shirts, corduroy trousers and jaunty touques, battling their way upstream. Canoeing, Remington wrote in 1896, is my “religion.” It was a passion that never lost its tang for him and late in life when his “elephantine bulk” made it impossible for him to hike or ride horseback he could be found paddling his canoe near his summer home and studio Ingleneuk in Chippewa Bay on the St. Lawrence.
In a Stiff Current
Artist: Frederic Remington Year Completed: 1892 Medium: Oil (black & white) on canvas Dimensions: 24 x 36 inches