Ted Harrison Facts

Ted Harrison was a popular English-born artist, best known for his paintings of the Yukon region of Canada.

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Facts About Ted Harrison

  • Ted Harrison was born in Wingate in County Durham in England in 1926.
  • His middle name is Hardy.
  • His mother was interested in fashion design and photography and encouraged her son to be creative when he was a child.
  • In 1943, Ted Harrison attended Hartlepool College of Art, but his studies were interrupted by World War 2.
  • After completing a period of military service, Ted Harrison finished his course, graduating with a Diploma in Design in 1950.
  • As a soldier, he served in India, East Africa, and Egypt.
  • He attended the University of Durham to obtain teaching qualifications and he taught in England, New Zealand, and Malaysia.
  • From 1968 to 1993, Ted Harrison lived in Carcross, Yukon, Canada, and worked as an artist and illustrator.
  • He illustrated several books, including The Cremation of Dan McGrew and The Shooting of Dan Mc Grew.
  • He is famous for painting the mountainous landscape of the Yukon, and its people and animals as they looked in his mind.
  • In 1996, Ted Harrison designed the Canada Post Christmas stamp.
  • He moved to Victoria, British Columbia in 1993.
  • He donated a large mural to the University of Victoria in 2009, it was called Vast Yukon and measured 6′ (1.8 metres) high, and nearly 20′ (6 metres) wide.
  • He was a member of The Oak Bay Rotary Club.
  • Ted Harrison has named Norman Cornish (an English painter) as one of his key inspirations.
  • Ted Harrison often used a technique called serigraphy (a form of silk screening) to produce his works.
  • In 1987, Ted Harrison was made a Member of the Order of Canada.
  • In 2009, Katherine Gibson published a biography of Ted Harrison called Ted Harrison: Painting Paradise.
  • His paintings are in public collections in countries all over the world, including Canada, the United States, Japan, Germany, and New Zealand.

Life is a rainbow road, multicoloured with the most brillaint hues and contrasting with the darkest tones.

Ted Harrison
  • In 2011, Ted Harrison donated his personal archive to the University of Victoria.
  • He died in 2015 at the age of 88.
  • Ted Harrison described his paintings as ‘part fantasy, part reality, and part abstraction’.

I paint from my mind, not from reality. It’s a world of happiness and joy that transcends the normal world. The dream world is best.

Ted Harrison
  • He was a big tea drinker, and he also enjoyed a pint of beer or Guinness.
  • His favourite food was Chinese food.
  • He preferred to use acrylic paints rather than oil paints.
  • Ted Harrison wrote and illustrated the books A Northern Alphabet (1982), The Last Horizon (1980), Children of the Yukon (1977), and O Canada (1992).