David Alexander Colville O.C. (Canadian, born 1920)
Ravens at the Dump signed, dated and numbered '14/19 Alex Colville 1965' (lower right) colour serigraph on board 30.5 x 68.6cm (12 x 27in).
Literature: Colville, David Burnett, Art Gallery of Ontario, McClelland and Stewart Limited, 1983, Toronto, pp 137 and 172, illustrated pg 182.
In his catalogue accompanying the exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario, David Burnett tells us that ravens are symbols of death and the devil, and writes that, in many of Colville's works dealing with nature, "the capacity for violence and aggression in the natural world is turned back onto us; our language and symbols of threat and violence are often drawn from our observations of the animal world," a point he feels intuitively arises in this work.
Although photography has played a relatively small part in the development of Colville's work, it can be said that film has been more influential. For example. In Ravens at the Dump, he said that the image reminded him of a Luftwaffe Heinkel on a bombing mission in Norway that he saw in a wartime newsreel.