Phil CLark (1925-2023)
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About The Artist
Phil's interest in horses and ranches goes back to his years growing up in Ladner and a stint haying on a ranch in Savanah. The memories flooded back when, in 1982, he drove photographer friend Dudley Witney to the Douglas Lake Ranch to shoot images for his book, "Ranch". The cowboys are exactly the same as when I was a kid", Phil exclaimed. When he returned home, he spent six months at the drawing board rendering his impressions from memory. Sixteen years and many rides taking black and white photographs later, his reminiscences in his familiar watercolours continued to captivate collectors. Although the riding became more difficult, Phil enjoyed depicting the life of cowboys and their open range country for many years, delighting his art collectors.
Depictions of the contemporary cowboy and his world "tell it like it is", however this world is rapidly disappearing. Riding with the crews at Douglas Lake, Nicola, Lauder Ranch and many others gave Phil a personal view of life in the saddle.
The 35 years in commercial art in Vancouver and Toronto as an illustrator show clearly Phil's awareness of composition and ability to dramatize the day-to-day activities of the cowboys. The whole idea of this form of art is not the technique of producing it, but to depict the people who live this hard life and thrive on it.
Phil Clark had not painted throughout his last 20 years due to health reasons. His watercolours are rarely parted with, and still highly sought-after and included in collections in many countries as well as the BC Government.
It is rare that Phil brought in any new watercolours since 2005, so having this awe-inspiring collection of original watercolours to show and offer for collecting is very exciting. Two are from his own estate, and the rest are from two avid Phil Clark collectors who are downsizing their home and thereby their art collection. Ask us to email you gallery photos of a piece you are admiring, to get up close and personal with the watercolour you like.
The family of Phil Clark of Penticton, BC is saddened to announce his passing on January 13, 2023 at the age of 97 years. Phil was loved by everyone who knew him. He was an accomplished commercial artist based in Toronto for many years and later specializing in Western Watercolours. He was also a skilled cabinetmaker. He will be dearly missed.