Summer 2013 Special Presentations series
Monday, August 5, 2013 at 8:00pm
Directed by Andreas Schultz
Starring Rhoda Colville and Alex Colville
Rated NR ·
A documentary (Germany) 2010
Production company: Andreas Schultz, Berlin
This intimate film portrait of Canadian painter Alex Colville (1920-2013) uses many of the artist’s realistic but unsettling canvases to illustrate how his 60-year relationship with his wife Rhoda is reflected in his oeuvre. The film shows Colville’s work in the light of important events in his personal life, focusing on his four decades spent in Wolfville, Nova Scotia and placing the artist’s austere, raw realism in context.
Colville choose his subjects from his immediate environment, illustrating the everyday routines of a family in a maritime province. We see scenes set in the university town of Wolfville, at Evangeline Beach with Cape Blomidon visible in the background, along the Gaspereau Valley and the snaking tidal waters of Grand Pré. Colville records the fleeting intensity of the present moment in such places with masterful control. He completed only two or three paintings per year, but the mysterious power of his works, the muted distress they convey, are testament to the time he devoted to each of them. “As a true realist, I must reinvent the world,” believed Colville.
Filmmaker Andrea Schultz sets the painter’s famously opaque but highly realistic imagery in its real-world context. COLVILLE is deeply insightful and visually stunning. This documentary provides a firsthand view of how a great Canadian artist draws inspiration from his deep roots in rural Canadian life. A documentary film crew spent six weeks at home with the artist, accompanying him as he went about his day, far from the limelight of the art world – a thoroughly unspectacular solitude that nonetheless enabled him to produce a spectacular, powerful body of work.