Lenhardt, Molly (c. 1914-95)

Molly Lenhardt, born Stefanka Molly Bassaraba near Lake Winnipegosis, Manitoba, was a self-taught painter who was nationally acclaimed for her emblematic paintings of Ukrainian-Canadian culture. An only child whose parents were community leaders, she saw it as her calling to document Ukrainian costume, symbols, and paintings. Her figures, typically at the centre of the painting, stare confidently out at the viewer, surrounded by bright colours and the geometrical detailing of costume. Lenhardt’s paintings were the subject of a retrospective organized by the Dunlop Art Gallery of Regina in 1990. Her work is included in the collections of the Saskatchewan Arts Board, the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Mendel Art Gallery, the University of Saskatchewan, and the MacKenzie Art Gallery. Lenhardt and her husband, Joseph, were married in 1940. In 1950, they purchased the Fairway Confectionary in Melville, which Molly continued to operate, after her husband’s death in 1979, for the rest of her life. She served on Melville City Council from 1977 to 1979.

Helen Marzolf

Further Reading

Marzolf, H. 1990. Molly Lenhardt Retrospective. Regina: Dunlop Art Gallery.