Carle Hessay
Canadian artist

Carle Hessay 1976 Empty Street

Carle Hessay 1976 Empty Street

Carle Hessay: Empty Street

This early working settlement of man's enterprise is eerily lit up by a fiery combustion of some strange cataclysmic event. One might assume that it is the spread of a fire still burning inside the tall structure on the right. The yellow and red glow on the pointed roofs of the buildings, however, suggests that something from above or further away is lighting up the conflagration and casting its reflection on the watery enclosure in the foreground. Is it simply a forest fire or something of apocalyptic magnitude?

In this scene, unlike the more grim urban landscape of "Waterfront Industry" painted the following year (see the City and Industrial Scenes section), there remains the possibility that the forest, suggested by the trees in the background, will eventually take over man's ambitious projects in the wilderness. This street, now prominently empty of man, might still be enveloped by the forces of nature waiting to reclaim its own.

(Dimensions: 35 x 23.4 inches; 89.3 x 59.7 cm.; oil on masonite; 1976)