Alex Colville Biography
Alex Colville born Alexander Colville was born in 1920 in Toronto, Ontario, he moved with his family at age seven to St. Catharines, and then to Amherst, Nova Scotia in 1929. He attended Mount Allison University from 1938 to 1942, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts.
Alex Colville Career
He took part in the Royal Canadian Navy’s landings in southern France was then attached to the 3rd Canadian Division. In the army for two years, and because he was a fine-arts student, he was made a war artist in May 1944. He returned to New Brunswick after the war and became a faculty member with the Fine Arts Department at Mount Allison University where he taught from 1946 to 1963. He left teaching to devote himself to painting and print-making full-time from a studio in his home on York Street, now now named Colville House.
In 1966, his works represented Canada at the Venice Biennale. In 1967, Colville was made an Officer of the Order of Canada, elevated to Companion in 1982, the order’s highest level. He lived in St. Catharines, Ontario, for three years before moving to Nova Scotia. In 1973, he moved his family to his wife’s hometown of Wolfville, where they lived and worked in her father’s house. He aligned himself with the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada and was a card-carrying party member for many years. In 1981 he was appointed university chancellor of Acadia University serving in that role until 1991.
Alex Colville Wife-Children
He married Rhoda Wright in 1942. They had four children, Graham, John, Charles, and Ann. Their second son, John, died on 22 February 2012.
Alex Colville Death
He died on 16 July 2013 at his house in Wolfville at the age of 92 of a heart condition.
Colville Alex Work
- Infantry, near Nijmegen, Holland
- The History of Mount Allison (The Circuit Rider)
- Nude and Dummy
- Man on Verandah
- Horse and Train
- Family and Rainstorm
- Couple on Beach
- Ocean Limited
- To Prince Edward Island
- Dog and Priest
- Target Pistol and Man
- Cyclist and Crow
- Black Cat
Alex Colville Prints
Some of his prints are; Horse and Train, Family and Rainstorm, Man on Verandah, To Prince Edward Island. Click the lick to buy or check your favourite paint.
Alex Colville Pacific
He made the Pacific print in 1967 , showing a man leaning against an open door looking out to sea while a Browning Hi-Power pistol rests on a table in the foreground, inspired one of the definitive scenes in the 1995 film Heat with actor Robert De Niro.
Alex Colville Limited Edition Prints
Alex Colville Books
- The Art of Alex Colville
- Alex Colville, Diary of a War Artist
Ordinary Magic: A Biographical Sketch of Alex Colville with Reproductions of His More Recent Works
- Colville, Pratt, Forrestall: A Traveling Exhibition
Alex Colville Seven Crows Print
Acrylic polymer emulsion on hardboard
60 x 120 cm
Owens Art Gallery Mount Allison University, Sackville NB
Gift of Mr. Ross B.
Alex Colville Binoculars
His binoculars works references to Indie filmmaker Wes Anderson’s film Moonrise Kingdom reverberates with visual. In Anderson’s film, we encounter Suzy atop a lighthouse in 1965 New England. She brings a pair of binoculars to her face, determined to see beyond her small-town life. The woman in Colville’s painting seems to share Suzy’s resolute look. Both Anderson and Colville use the binoculars as a device.
Alex Colville Horse
This 1954 work was inspired by two lines from the poet Roy Campbell:
“Horse and Train” is a part of the Art Gallery of Hamilton’s permanent collection
Alex Colville Exhibit Ottawa
Alex Colville exhibit comes to National Gallery in Ottawa
Updated:April 22, 2015
An exhibit of famed Canadian painter Alex Colville that drew record crowds in Toronto last summer opens at the National Gallery of Canada on Thursday.
The exhibit was first presented last year by the Art Gallery of Ontario and became the best-attended Canadian exhibition in the gallery’s history.
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The National Gallery of Canada has added 17 works from its own collection for the Ottawa presentation.
Colville, who died in 2013 in his home in Wolfville, N.S., gained international recognition for iconic works such as Horse and Train, To Prince Edward Island and Woman in Bathtub.
AGO director Matthew Teitelbaum said the gallery wanted to avoid having a traditional retrospective exhibit on Colville.
“We thought, let’s try something different, and the different approach was to try and figure out what it was in the images and the way that he worked that stuck with us as viewers. Why did these images touch so many people?” said Teitelbaum.