The style of painting that brought international recognition to James Lumbers all started on a summer afternoon while he was sketching an abandoned house on an island in The Georgian Bay. It was there that he found a diary from 1913 with some photo negatives tucked inside. A few months later, he printed these negatives and found that someone had photographed the family sitting on the same porch as in his sketch. It was this experience that launched a series of paintings called “Moments in Time”.
James Lumbers graduated from the Ontario College of Art and worked for many years as an industrial and corporate designer. In the late 60’s he began to paint. He was offered an opportunity to join a scientific expedition to travel to the Sub Arctic to document the wildlife of the area. His love for the North continued for ten years. In 1973, Lumbers was elected a Fellow of the Explorers Club of New York because of his visual documentation of peoples and wildlife of the far north. That same year he was also elected a member of the Society of Animal Artists of New York.
Lumbers is documented in Who’s Who in American Art and A Dictionary of International Biographies in the United Kingdom. He has appeared on many television and radio programs over the years and there have been documentaries, magazine and newspaper articles produced about him and his art. By the late 1970’s James Lumbers was recognized as one of Canada’s best known realist painters. He has had numerous exhibitions across Canada and the United States.
Lumbers has developed a strong sense of history while researching his paintings and has often remarked, “We are the products of our memories and traditions”.