Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Three Horses

Unlike Alex Colville's Horse and Train (1954) or Church and Horse (1964), which evoke a sense of urgency and unease, Three Horses (1946), evokes a feeling of peace and tranquility.  Three horses, one brown, one rust-coloured and one grey, gather in a field of hay.  A barn sits in the background.  White clouds fill the sky.  It seems like all is well with the world.

Three Horses comes on the tail end of the Second World War.  Perhaps Alex Colville, after coming off the battlefield where he sketched scenes of horror and devastation, is content to just sit in a farmer's field and sketch horses.  He surrounded himself with animals all of his life, a source of companionship.  "Colville viewed animals as essentially innocent -- incapable of malice unless conditioned so by humans." (http://www.welcometocolville.ca/animals)



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