Qu'Appelle Valley: Artist Statement
"This series was generated a year ago when I saw an old friend Jim Lanigan, collector of the early Saskatchewan painter, James Henderson (who painted the valley extensively). On learning from Jim he had land in the valley I arranged to spend time there in the fall and did the sketches in this show and subsequent pictures worked up from these sketches and other photographs. The spot turned out to be an ancient campground of First Nations People, going back to before the horse era; some of the tipi rings were small and indicated this. It was only a few miles from the birthplace of the first Saskatchewan born painter, Illingworth Kerr, the head of the Alberta College of Art when I attended in the early sixties. His signature paintings were of the Qu'Appelle Valley, he loved so dearly, and went back to all his life. The valley was a freightway for the early fur traders, travelling the river by canoe and later Metis Red River Cart trains supplying the forts in northern Alberta and Saskatchewan. I was intoxicated by the presence of spirits there that seemed so welcoming and protective. I didn't want to leave until the water froze up in my trailer."