Curated by Ray Cronin

Taking his subjects from his surroundings, the Maritime-based artist Alex Colville (1920–2013) returned to similar themes throughout his seventy-year career: family life, desire, individual will, and relationships between men and women, humans and animals, nature and the machine. He was intent on creating a world of order from the reality of chaos, always aware of the essential and tragic fragility of this Sisyphean task. Colville’s paintings are distinctive and easily recognizable, marked by his careful, unified brushwork and meticulously arranged compositional structures. For more on Alex Colville read Ray Cronin’s Alex Colville: Life & Work.


Ray Cronin is a Nova Scotia–based writer and curator. A former director and CEO of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, he is the founding curator of the Sobey Art Award and the author of Mary Pratt: Still Light (2018) and Our Maud: The Life, Art and Legacy of Maud Lewis (2017).

  • Infantry, Near Nijmegen, Holland

    Infantry, Near Nijmegen, Holland 1946

  • Nude and Dummy

    Nude and Dummy 1950

  • Three Girls on a Wharf

    Three Girls on a Wharf 1953

  • Horse and Train

    Horse and Train 1954

  • To Prince Edward Island

    To Prince Edward Island 1965

  • Woman in Bathtub

    Woman in Bathtub 1973

  • Black Cat

    Black Cat 1996

  • West Brooklyn Road

    West Brooklyn Road 1996

  • Studio

    Studio 2000

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