1920 - 2013
Study for Swimming Dog and Canoe
gouache on paper
signed and dated 1979 and 14 Jun 79, 25 Jun, 26 and on verso titled, dated June 14, 1979 and inscribed "S 13683" on the gallery label
5 1/4 x 11 3/4 po, 13.3 x 29.8 cm
Estimation : $30,000 - $40,000
Vendu pour : $73,250
Exposition à : Heffel Toronto – 13 avenue Hazelton
Woltjen/Udell Gallery, Edmonton
Collection of Peggy Marko, Edmonton
David Burnett, Colville, Art Gallery of Ontario, 1983, the 1979 painting entitled Swimming Dog and Canoe reproduced page 185
Mark Cheetham, Fine Canadian Art, Heffel Fine Art Auction, 2016, page 49
Study for Swimming Dog and Canoe is a fine, brilliantly coloured late-stage gouache for the exceptional 1979 painting. The main elements for this painting are in place, and Colville has progressed beyond the working out of the image with sightlines. In this serene composition, human and animal are in harmony with their natural setting. The figures in the canoe are Alex and Rhoda Colville with their black Labrador swimming alongside. As Mark Cheetham wrote, “Colville believed that everyday occurrences were the most significant in our lives and most deserving of his punctilious attention. Animals—both domesticated and wild—were important to the Colvilles and very much part of their everyday routine. Here the two people, guardians and fellow travelers, glide at a safe distance from the dog, watching it with little concern.” In the painting, Colville intentionally leaves the faces of the figures slightly undefined, while the dog’s gaze is intense and in sharp focus. Colville intended to contrast the perception of animal and human. As Cheetham commented, “he does not equate animals’ seeing with our own. Instead, in Swimming Dog and Canoe, he depicts harmony and difference.”
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