PRCA, OSA, CSGA, CSPWC, MSA, FRSA, CGP (1900-1994)
Born in Cramond, near Edinburgh, Scotland, Comfort moved with his family to Winnipeg in 1912. He won his first art competition at the age of eight, and later, at age fourteen, won a watercolour painting competition at the YMCA judged by F.H. Brigden, RCA. This success led to his being employed by Brigden’s Winnipeg office, and subsequently enrollment in the Winnipeg School of Art (1918-1920, 1921-1924). In 1922-1923 he enrolled in the Art Students’ League in New York and studied under E. Allen Tucker, Vincent Drummond and Robert Henri. He returned to Canada in 1923, moved to Toronto in 1925, and became a charter member of the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour in 1926. In the economic downturn of the 1930’s he teamed up with Will Ogilvie, and the pair produced portraits, advertising materials, architectural designs and magazine illustrations to sustain their fine art involvement. An official war artist between 1943-1946, Comfort was named President of the Royal Canadian Academy in 1957, and later Director of the National Gallery of Canada, a position he held between 1960-1965. He painted landscapes, portraits, genre and military subjects in oil as well as murals. He wrote numerous articles on art for various Canadian magazines and taught at the Ontario College of Art and the University of Toronto. Comfort exhibited at the RCA between 1925-1970, and the AAM between 1927-1939. He is represented in the National Gallery of Canada.