Gundega Cenne

Gundega Aria Janfelds Cenne (1933 – December 16, 2009) was a Latvian-born Canadian artist and art educator.

Gundega Cenne
A young white woman with straight light-colored hair, wearing a dark top.
Gundega Cenne, from a 1966 publication.
Gundega Aria Janfelds

DiedDecember 16, 2009
Other namesGundega Janfelde; Gundega Janfelds-Cenne

Early lifeEdit

Gundega Aria Janfelds was born in Riga, the daughter of Valentins Janfelds and Hilda-Alma Freimanis Janfelds.[1] Her family left Latvia in 1945, lived in a displaced persons camp in Germany, and moved to Montreal in 1949.[2] She graduated from Montreal High School for Girls. She completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at Sir George Williams University in 1956.[3] She also earned a teaching credential at McGill University, and pursued further art training at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.[4]


Cenne made filmstrip illustrations for the Montreal Protestant School Board when she was still a teenager.[2][5] She illustrated a 1954 French-language textbook, Jouons Book 1.[6] She taught art, and was a member of the Independent Artists' Association of Montreal. She exhibited her paintings in shows in Montreal, Paris, New York,[7] and Toronto as a young woman.[4]

She was a full-time independent artist after she was seriously injured in a car accident in 1963. "I keep my wheelchair condition concealed whenever I am not present, or the public has only seen my photograph," she wrote in 1966, "for I wish to keep my work and my physical condition as two separate entities. I am a painter in my own right, and my physical condition has nothing to do with it."[3] She held a retrospective exhibit in 1969, in Owen Sound, where she lived.[8] In 1975 she was part of a show of six Latvian-Canadian artists at the National Library of Canada.[9] In 1986, her work was exhibited at the Latvian Lutheran Church in Brookline, Massachusetts.[10]

Personal lifeEdit

Cenne married orthodontist Ivars Cenne; they had two children, Peter and Lauma.[11] Her daughter, Lauma Kristina Cenne, became a textile artist.[12] Her mother and her husband both died in 2001;[13][14] she died in 2009, aged 76 years, in Ottawa.[15][16]


  1. ^ "Obituary for JANFELDS Valentins". The Gazette. 1990-08-25. p. 57. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  2. ^ a b Dickason, Olive (1951-04-17). "Young Latvian Girl Draws Cartoons to Teach French". The Gazette. p. 4. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  3. ^ a b Gundega Cenne, "Portrait..." Toomey J Gazette 9(1966): 48-49.
  4. ^ a b "Gundega Cenne". Latvia Canada Business Council. Retrieved 2020-07-18.
  5. ^ "Winner of the Lilian M. Hendrie Scholarship". The Gazette. 1951-10-24. p. 18. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  6. ^ "Jouons Book 1 by Evelyn M. Eaton, S. J. MacGowan: Very Good Hardcover (1954) | Rivendell Books". AbeBooks. Retrieved 2020-07-18.
  7. ^ Exhibition of paintings by Gundega Cenne. New York: Ligoa Duncan Art Gallery. 1966. OCLC 297156135.
  8. ^ Gundega Cenne: a retrospective exhibition. Owen Sound: Tom Thomson Memorial Gallery and Museum of Fine Art. 1969. OCLC 297156134.
  9. ^ Walker, Kathleen (1975-03-15). "Around the Galleries". The Ottawa Citizen. p. 78. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  10. ^ "Specials". The Boston Globe. 1986-10-16. p. 131. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  11. ^ "In Memoriam" (PDF). Concordia University Magazine: 36. Spring 2010.
  12. ^ "New Exhibits" (PDF). Maude Abbott Medical Museum Newsletter. 3. Fall 2018.
  13. ^ "Obituary for Hilda JANFELDS, 1907-2001". The Gazette. 2001-02-26. p. 40. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  14. ^ "Obituary for CENNE (Aged 69)". The Ottawa Citizen. 2001-02-20. p. 69. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via
  15. ^ "Sorority seeks contributions to complete artist Cenne's album". Latvians Online. 2010-01-02. Retrieved 2020-07-18.
  16. ^ "Obituary for Gundega CENNE Aria (Aged 76)". The Ottawa Citizen. 2009-12-18. p. 70. Retrieved 2020-07-18 – via