Robert Fulford: Alex Colville’s paintings transcended the art world to become emblems of national consciousness

I feel as if I knew this artist. I am the opposite star sign to him and know his son Graham.

National Post | Full Comment

For more than half a century, the paintings of Alex Colville soared triumphantly above the usual confines of the art world, establishing themselves as the possession of all Canadians, emblems of national consciousness. When he died on Tuesday, at 92, he left behind a country whose collective imagination he had enriched.

Colville’s images appeared across the country in magazines and on book covers, on coins and postcards. He was the first artist since the Group of Seven to become popular with a large public. The smaller world of art galleries and museums had its doubts, exhibiting his work but hedging its judgments, sometimes finding him old-fashioned, his art too carefully calculated, never spontaneous in the contemporary way.

The public, however, embraced him without reservation, perhaps partly because he worked with traditional Canadian images — rural scenes from near his home in Nova Scotia, farm animals, domestic work.

Later he moved…

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It’s raining Molotov Cocktails

fish framei

Gee! I thought Pisces were idealistic heroes willing to burn themselves in protest for their current humanitarian pet cause! And then I come across a slippery fish born on my birthday who as a high and mighty dictator’s minister, signed 358 death warrants.  The internet can corroborate this fact..

And yes, go ahead and gloat. DO. Permission granted.  Being a niggling contrarian I tell other signs their zodiac related flaws and shortcomings at the first available opportunity. And then  i  discover this  glorious bastard, a Russian politician called Molotov on a site titled glorious birthdays. A Stalin worshipper and staunch supporter. A Bolshevik.  Born on my precious birthday, bearing my unique birthday number. A mega embarassment in numbers, like having Adolf as  half-rotter. Did I say rotter? I meant brother.Eer.. What do I make of this?

Well I will tell you a friend’s take on astrology. Money drivn rubbish.

Molotov who had his name grace fire bombs with a murderous twist,  single handedly   proves that rogues and devils can be born on angelic days. Even the unique March ninth day when geniouses and bold explorers and other fine people were sent to earth on a special mission. And, yes, it did hurt when I dropped from heaven.

On second thought maybe I am guilty as charged. Maybe I share  his overflowing devotion to dogma.  In my case at least it is simply my dogma.

wHAT ABOUT HIM? A slippery fish, A MURDEROUS FANATIC, an excuse of a human being overflowing with deadly devotion to Bolshie dogma and number 2 after the murderous Stalin.  His surname, an assumed name referring to Mol, meaning hammer with industrial undertones to make him sound more trendy-if you get my drift-  caught on and was immortalized in all  languages in places where there is petrol, cloth and matches: Molotov, Stalin’s henchman. Hey what’s a henchman? Quote-“one who follows the evil without asking the whys . The birthday of this Stalinist henchman, as a historical astral footnote is entirely coincidental and (only by accident)  tallies with mine