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"Isaac’s First Swim" by Larry Towell

Canadian Photography


"Isaac’s First Swim" by Larry Towell



Date of Issue

April 8, 2015




Postal Administration



Canadian Photography

Series Time Span

2013 - 2017

Perforation or Dimension

Serpentine Die Cut 13½


Canadian Bank Note


Design: Stéphane Huot.

Original Artwork

Larry Towell


Booklet of 10 stamps

Quantity Produced - 220,000
Original Price: $8.50
Dimension: 36 mm x 30 mm
Printing Process: Lithography in 8 colours

Souvenir sheet of 4 stamps

Quantity Produced - 130,000
Original Price: $3.75
Dimension: 150 mm x 75 mm
Printing Process: Lithography in 5 colours
Gum Type: PVA

Souvenir sheet Official First Day Covers (set of 2)

Quantity Produced - 11,000
Cancellation Location: Montréal QC
Original Price: $9.95
Dimension: 191 mm x 113 mm

About Stamp

This third issue in a five-year series continues to showcase the best Canadian photographers and photography of the past 150 years, as chosen by leading curators and gallery owners. The seven-stamp issue boasts five Permanent™ domestic stamps, one U.S.-rate stamp, one international-rate stamp, two souvenir sheets, two souvenir sheet Official First Day Covers, and a set of postcards featuring all seven stamp images. The cancellation location is Montréal due to the connection so many photographers in this edition have with the city, while the cancellation mark suggests a camera aperture. Stéphane Huot is the series designer.

Of the domestic images, Nina Raginsky’s Shoeshine Stand (1) was shot in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1974, when she was working as a street-portrait photographer in Montréal, Mexico, London, Vancouver and Victoria. Angels, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day (2) was shot in Montréal in 1962 by the Shanghai-born photojournalist Sam Tata. Conrad Poirier’s Friends and Family and Trips. In front of Simpsons (3) was taken in 1936 in Montréal, one of thousands of photos he shot between that year and 1946. Poirier was regarded as an eccentric with a new vision of photography. Southam Sisters, Montreal (4) was shot circa 1915-19 by mining engineer, journalist, photographer and artist Harold Mortimer-Lamb, who specialized in soft-focus romantic portraits. Magnum Photo Agency member Larry Towell depicts his daughter, Naomi, immersing her little brother in the Sydenham River in Isaac’s First Swim, Lambton County, Ontario, Canada, 1996 (5).

The U.S.-rate stamp features Geoffrey James’ Alex Colville on the Tantramar Marshes (6), near Sackville, N.B., shot circa 1970 when James was writing a profile of the artist. Born in Wales in 1942, James immigrated to Canada in 1966, becoming a writer and associate editor for Time magazine in Montréal. He later became head of visual arts at the Canada Council in 1975 before leaving in 1982 to fully devote himself to photography. His work shows the effects humans have had on the landscape, from asbestos mining in Quebec to the heavily guarded border between the U.S. and Mexico at Tijuana. In 2008, the National Gallery of Canada organized a retrospective exhibition of his work and, in 2012, he received a Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.

Geneviève Cadieux’s La Voie Lactée (7) (1992) graces the international-rate stamp. Often cinematic, Cadieux incorporates audiovisual elements into her large-scale installations. Her work explores topics of identity, gender and the human body. She presents the body as a landscape, focusing on small details – such as a mouth, bruise or scar – in extreme close-up. Cadieux is also interested in the way that art integrates into the urban environment. Many of her works are installed in public spaces: this one crowns a building in downtown Montréal and its sister work appears in the Paris metro. She began participating in international art exhibitions in the 1980s and has represented Canada at major biennales (large-scale, international art exhibitions) in Sydney, São Paulo and Venice. Cadieux is the winner of a 2011 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.

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