Anna Syperek

Home: Antigonish, Nova Scotia
Title: Into the Night
Media: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 60 x 91 cm


Into the Night is not just a portrait of my husband, Peter Murphy, but much more than that. It is also a portrait of a room and of that moment when the lights are turned on, and the inside is transformed into a warm, safe space for Pete and his cat. But the outside is still visible in the waning winter light, and for a few moments, the outdoor light is this indescribable colour of mystical blue. And the trees are now one-dimensional and seem almost menacing as they embrace the house. Then the brilliant blue and the trees fade into the Night. Inside all is well.


Anna Syperek, born in England to Polish and English parents and raised in Oshawa, Ontario, moved to Antigonish, Nova Scotia, in 1971. She graduated with a BFA in painting and printmaking at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1980. Anna then settled back in the Antigonish area with her husband, filmmaker Peter Murphy; together they raised three daughters. Well-known across the Maritimes for her large format landscape etchings, oils, and watercolours, Anna also taught part-time in the Art Department at St. Francis Xavier University for 26 years, where she also set up a community printmaking workshop. “Drawing, painting and printmaking have always been a way for me to make sense of the world. I see so intimately when I draw and have come to love the beauty of the ordinary world around me. In fact, I see how extra-ordinary it really is.”