Sid Barron’s Oak Bay

Sid Barron's cartoon for the Victoria Daily Times, April 1, 1959, reprinted in Barron's Victoria. Reproduced by kind permission of the copyright holder.
Sid Barron’s cartoon for the Victoria Daily Times, April 1, 1959, reprinted in Barron’s Victoria. Copyright Jessamine (Jesi) Barron. Reproduced by kind permission. The button-down chap with tears of joy trickling down his cheek — a refugee from the Rat Race?

Sidney Arnold Barron (1917-2006) was born in Toronto and grew up in Victoria. He studied art with Alan Edwards. Editorial cartoonist Victoria Daily Times 1957-61; Toronto Star 1961-88; the Calgary Albertan. His wife Jesi continues to practice as an artist. “I grew up in Oak Bay,” she writes.

We lived at 766 Monterey Ave by the school. The house recently has changed completely. Was white with green shutters. There were six huge oak trees in front … My parents moved to Currie Road and lived there till my mother died in 1985. She was 84 years old. Dad went back to Ireland and died there seven years later. It’s a great wee life. I love Victoria. I married Sid Barron in 1977. We had thirty great years together. I am an artist so we had a lot in common.

Times-Colonist obituary put it thusly:

In 1975, Barron met Jesi, a fellow artist destined to share his life. The two beachcombed together and painted, Jesi focusing on sea wrack and Barron capturing kids playing in tide pools.

When the National Archives, and then the Glenbow Museum, bought huge piles of his cartoon originals, the Barrons bought a Volkswagen van and hit the road.

Later, they left Victoria and moved to Coombs, where for 10 years they held open house in their twin studios on an acre of rural property. There they contributed to the success of The Old School House arts centre but longed to be back in Victoria.

“Anywhere would be better than up here in the winter,” Sid wrote at the time. “Green and grey. No purple shadows on the snow. Very few people.” …

His paintings, and Jesi’s, were for many years featured at the Gallery in Oak Bay Village. Barron’s extensive oeuvre includes finely detailed portraits of cargo vessels, stylized scenes of freighters at anchor and sunny impressionist beach scenes.*

* “Sid Barron, 1917-2006” by Robert Amos, Victoria Times-Colonist, May 2, 2006.

The National Gallery of Canada holds more than 1,300 of Barron’s original cartoons; the Glenbow Museum, Calgary, 70 originals (“Sid Barron, Cartoonist, 1917-2006,” by Tom Hawthorne, The Globe and Mail, May 15, 2006).

3 thoughts on “Sid Barron’s Oak Bay”

    1. Jesi, You mentioned having art works — but not cartoons — of Sid Barron for sale. How should interested readers contact you?

      Appreciate your interest in this project.

      1. An email to jesikb@gmail.com by the way one of his paintings went yesterday. Right now the Gallery in Oak Bay has one watercolour of Sid’s and four of mine. I put them in there earlier in the week. Cheers Jesi barron

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