Born in Tiflis, Russia (now known as Tbilisi, Georgia) in 1894, Frederick Nicholas Postnikoff and his father immigrated to a farming community in Saskatchewan in 1900. Frederick later chose his maternal family name, Loveroff, when he later went to art school.
During the long winter nights on the prairies, Frederick Loveroff picked up a paintbrush and dabbled in watercolours in an effort to escape boredom.
Moving to Toronto in 1913, Frederick Loveroff earned a scholarship to the Central Ontario School of Art (now known as the Ontario College of Art). He studied there for the next four years under George A. Reid, J.W. Beatty, William Cruikshank and J.E.H. MacDonald, a member of the Group of Seven.
Frederick Loveroff exhibited his paintings – oil and watercolour landscapes of farm and city scenes – in Toronto. He was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1920, and was also active in the Ontario Society of Artists.
Receiving critical praise, Frederick Loveroff became known for his landscapes painted in vibrant and rich impressionistic colours. Influences included J.W. Beatty and Maurice Cullen.
One of the highlights of Frederick Loveroff’s brief career was the acceptance of his paintingSnow on the Hillside by the Leicester City Art Gallery, Wembley show, England in 1924. Frederick Loveroff’s work was also part of group exhibitions at the Imperial Gallery of Art in London, England, and at the Musée du Jeu de Paume in Paris, France.
Having travelled with Natives through the rural territory between Winnipeg and Norway House, Manitoba, Frederick Loveroff’s travels were reflected in his many sketches of forest and lake areas. Some of these small oil sketches were later transferred into studio paintings.
When the art market declined sharply during the Depression, Frederick Loveroff was unable to sell his paintings. Rather than selling his work for significantly less than their worth, he stowed them in an attic. (These were eventually preserved, mostly in one collection.)
When his situation became hopeless in 1934, Frederick Loveroff left Toronto for California to once again make his living as a farmer.
It is believed he never painted again.
Because Frederick Loveroff abandoned paintings, his artistic career only stretched from about 1918 to 1934, making his works scarce and sought-after by collectors.
Frederick Loveroff died in Redwood, California, in 1959. He was 66.
Frederick Loveroff’s work is represented in the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Canada, University of Toronto Hart House, Art Gallery of Ontario, University of Saskatchewan and the Mendel Gallery in Saskatchewan. A large number of small oil sketches are known to have been collected by a private collector in Saskatoon.
Source: A Dictionary of Canadian Artists, volumes 1-8 by Colin S. MacDonald, and volume 9 (online only), by Anne Newlands and Judith Parker. National Gallery of Canada, Artists in Canada database.