Florence Vale was born in Essex, England and two years later her family emigrated to Toronto, Canada. Her parents had encouraged music, fantasy, and dreams in the young Florence’s life. Her father was a piano maker and her mother a music hall musician. She met artist Albert Franck and married him in 1929. Franck was part of the Gerrard street bohemian circle of artists, writers, and critics. She was introduced to the world of visual arts through her husband. The Franck home was used as a center for young artists such as Harold Town, Oscar Cahen, and Ray Mead. Albert Franck even organized two exhibitions of “unaffiliated artists” in 1950 and 1951. In 1953 the Franck’s decided to open a gallery in their Hazelton Ave. home. This gallery only lasted a year.*
Florence Vale started to paint in the late 1940’s using her husbands paints and supplies. She was self- taught and over the next thirty five years “ her private world of fantasy, dreams, and memories provided her with the source of her imagery and emotional content” in her art. Her art “ was a world in which fantasy and reality are interwoven to create a private and secret environment.”*
1949 International Cinema, Toronto
1950 Woodsworth House, Toronto
1964 Jerrold Morris International Gallery, Toronto
1967 Victoria College, University of Toronto
1967 Art Gallery of Windsor, Ontario
1974 Mazelow Gallery, Toronto
1977 Gadatsy Gallery, Toronto
1978 Victoria College, University of Toronto
1979 Gadatsy Gallery, Toronto
1980 Agnes Etherington Art Center, Kingston, Ontario, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, The Gallery Stratford, Ontario, Rodman Hall Art Center, St. Catherines, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Ontario, Confederation Center of the Arts, Charlottestown, Dalhousie Art Gallery, Halifax.
Florence Vale participated in numerous group exhibitions across Canada. In 1964 she participated in an exhibition at the Albright Knox Gallery in Buffalo, New York.
She died in 2003.
*Natalie Luckyj, author of Metamorphosis, Memories, Dreams, and Reflections, The Work of Florence Vale.1980, pg. 15