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Updated: Wed, 24 Jul 2013 11:04:53 GMT | By The Canadian Press, cbc.ca

Alex Colville remembered as gifted painter at service

Alex Colville remembered as gifted painter at service

Family, friends and admirers of Alex Colville paid their respects at a funeral service Wednesday in Nova Scotia for the celebrated painter.

A casket draped in the Canadian flag led a procession of mourners into the memorial service at the Manning Memorial Chapel at Acadia University in Wolfville, where Colville once served as chancellor.

Rev. Timothy McFarland, Acadia University's chaplain, said Colville will be remembered for his honesty, passion and compassion.

"We remember a man who had an instinct for keen observation and a gift to communicate in his art and in his life that which he observed," McFarland told the packed chapel.

"Let it be that we will feel our loss, but so too will we continue to be inspired to follow his example of adding, co-creating in this world and all of creation in ways that will leave it a little better than we found it."

Colville died July 16 at his home in Wolfville from a heart condition. He was 92.

His work reached millions, extending well beyond Canada through art galleries, magazines, book covers, posters, television, coins and even the cover of Bruce Cockburn's 1973 album Night Vision.

A renowned painter, sketch artist, muralist and engraver, Colville was known for capturing the simple, tranquil moments of everyday life on canvas.

He was born in Toronto on Aug. 24, 1920. He moved to Amherst, N.S., as a boy with his family and studied fine arts at Mount Allison University in nearby Sackville, N.B., where he later created some of his most significant works, including Nude and Dummy and Horse and Train.

It was also there that Colville met his wife and muse, Rhoda. The couple married in 1942 in Wolfville, a quaint university town in the Annapolis Valley that became their home.

Though Colville's alma mater remained close to his heart, his ties to Acadia University also ran deep.

The university awarded Colville an honorary degree in 1975 and named him chancellor six years later. Colville held the post until 1991 and later served as an honorary member of Acadia's board of governors.

Colville is survived by daughter Ann and his two sons, Graham and Charles. Rhoda Colville died last December at the couple's home.

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