About the Artist
Alan Bateman was born in Nigeria in 1965 and grew up in Burlington, Ontario. At the age of eight the family including his internationally known artist father Robert Bateman his mom Suzanne Lewis, a very accomplished watercolourist and two siblings moved to Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. He entered the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in the mid 1980's. Alan's work by this time was influenced by other well known east coast realists, Alex Colville and Tom Forrestal, both are also in the McCreath Canoe Collection. Alan describes his artistic intuition as "to paint, I have to live in a place for some time so I can absorb my surroundings - I'm not comfortable driving around the countryside looking for subjects. Nor am I sure how the evolution works - it just happens while I'm doing things in my day-to-day life. Something worth painting will suddenly become apparent to me - shadows of elm trees against the house, light on a wall, the colours on a hardwood floor. Time and place are as important to me as the central object". Alan and his wife artist Holly Carr and their two children live in a 200 year-old farmhouse in the Annapolis Valley near Canning, Nova Scotia. He has been actively exhibiting in Canada since 1987 with thirteen solo exhibitions, thirteen group shows and numerous exhibitions in the USA. Alan has twice been awarded the Montreal based Elizabeth Greenshields Award which is awarded to artists working in a representational style of painting, drawing, sculpture or printmaking.
Comments on the Work
Alan Bateman's realistic painting "Waskesiu Canoe, 2000" has a special place in the collection. The McCreath's have spent the vast majority of their summers at Waskesiu, Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan and have canoed many of the intricate waterways of the park. It is the country of the famous Englishman Archibald Belaney turned indigenous naturalist Grey Owl who gave notoriety to the area of Prince Albert National Park in the 1930's. Alan has painted a prospector style canoe, constructed of wood and canvas resting on the lakeshore in partial shade. A very stable vessel with great load capacity about 16-17' long with sinew wrapped bow and stern seats it is the epitome of canoes that grace many of Canada's boreal forest lakes and rivers.