Blind Contour Homage: “For What Avails? … The Midnight Sun” Betty Dimock
Research into the life of Betty Dimock turns up as much information about her wartime experience as it does about her artwork, despite the fact that her watercolours hang in galleries around the world.
Born in New Brunswick, Dimock knew from a young age that she wanted to be a nurse; while waiting to enter nursing school, she studied art at New York’s Pratt Art Institute. Upon graduating from Pratt, she entered nursing school in New Brunswick, graduating in 1940 and enlisting in the military.
During World War II, Dimock worked as a nurse with the South African army; stationed in South Africa, she treated soldiers wounded in North Africa and shipped to the nearest Commonwealth nation. She remembers the horror with which she regarded weeks-old injuries and, later in England and Holland, the agony of administering penicillin to wounded soldiers.
While in service, Dimock suffered an injury that led to hearing loss; the struggle led her to advocate for the hearing impaired for much of her life.
After the end of WWII, Dimock studied art at the Sorbonne and then returned to Canada, where she married Herbert Dimock. Over the next decades, she won countless awards for her paintings—watercolours and lithographs. She passed away in Winnipeg, Manitoba at the age of 99.
1916 – Saint John, NB
2015 – Winnipeg, Manitoba
Lawrence, Joan. “Lives Lived: Elizabeth (Betty) Dimock, 99.” The Globe and Mail, 29 April 2016. https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/facts-and-arguments/lives-lived-elizabeth-betty-dimock-99/article29785888/
“Veteran Stories: Elizabeth (Betty) Dimock, nee Grimmer.” The Memory Project. http://www.thememoryproject.com/stories/63:elizabeth-betty-dimock-grimmer/