Waterloo Region Record, 28 Sept. 2019 – 5 Oct. 2019.
“The artist made me more creative as a nurse. The nursing made me more human as an artist.”
Born 30 March 1952, in Newmarket Ontario. At age 10 years she moved with her family, both parents were accomplished artists, to a house in Kitchener across from the Doon School of Fine Arts ( now called Homer Watson House & Gallery). At age 11 years she studied there.
Initially set on a career in art, according to her brother John, their father discouraged her from making art a profession because of the struggle to earn a living. On the eve of her signing up for the University of Guelph’s fine arts program she switched direction and chose a nursing program at Conestoga College. But, following nursing school, she did resume her art studies restarting at University of Guelph and continuing to Ontario College of Art and Mohawk College.
She carried on parallel careers in both nursing and the visual arts. As a nurse she was working in general care in hospitals. About the same time, the early 1970’s she was working from a studio in Toronto illustrating books. From below we can see that from the mid 1970’s into the early 1980’s she was illustrating stories for Canadian Children’s Annual. It is said that her daughter Liz was a favourite subject for her. One wonders if Liz was the model for the “Susan Super Sleuth” stories written by William Ettridge . See Laura Piotrowski who also illustrated “Susan Super Sleuth” stories.
In 1998 she had an exhibit at the Kitchener City Hall of her portraits of prominent individuals including sculptor Tony Urquhart and painter Peter Etril Snyder. Around 2002 she began working for an agency specializing in palliative care in hospices. Here she often painted her patients. An exhibit of these was held in the KOR Gallery in Kitchener in 2005.
About 2017, she was diagnosed with cancer and about a year later she moved to British Columbia to be closer to her daughter and sister. Even then she continued to paint, joined a local arts group many of whose members she helped improve their skills. She died 28 September 2019 in a hospice in Comox British Columbia.
BOOK TEXT & GRAPHIC ANTHOLOGY:
Canadian Children’s Annual, 1976. Ed., Robert F. Neilson. Art Dir., Mary Tach. Potlatch
Publications,1975: “Whobody.” Writ., Catherine Bankler: 173.
|Canadian Children’s Annual,… Ed., R. F. Neilson. Art Dir., M. Tach. Potlatch Publ.,…: “Susan Super Sleuth …” Writ., William Ettridge: ….|
|1976.1975: “… and the Diamond Dilemma”: 24-29.
1981. 1980: “… and the Case of the Worried Widow”” 50-59.
1982. 1981: “… and the Case Of The Camper Cooks”: 77-84.
|Canadian Children’s Annual,… Ed., R.F. Neilson. Art Dir., M. Tach. Potlatch Publ.,..: “…” …: …|
|1976. 1975: “Jason’s Boy.” Writ., Will Connor: 156-158. “The Magic Mouth Piece.” Writ., Estelle Salata: 128-129.
1981. 1980: “File Under Good Deeds.” Writ., Margaret J. Borle: 84-87.
1983. 1982: “Snow Eater.” Writ., Marjorie Holland: 94-95.
Canadian Children’s Annual 1975 Monster Map. Potlatch Publications, 1974.
“Lifetimes: Laura Urquhart was highly regarded artist, nurse.” Writ., Valerie Hill. Waterloo Region Record, 15 Oct. 2019. https://www.therecord.com/news/waterloo-region/2019/10/15/lifetimes-laura-urquhart-was-highly-regarded-artist-nurse.html
Obituary. Waterloo Region Record, 28 Sept. – 5 Oct. 019. https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/therecord-waterloo/obituary.aspx?n=laura-urquhart&pid=195081104