Frank Vervoort 1930 - 1983

Frank was a beautiful human being.
He was naturally kind, always found an angle on things that made cynicism feel futile.
He was murdered in Calgary, Alberta, in 1983.

He realized, one day, that his best work always came when  he was, as he said, "really looking."
He set out to investigate that "really looking" and began producing works that offered tremendous possibilities.
We lost a great deal when he died, I lost a very special friend.
I was thousands of miles away from Calgary when he died and could not even return there for his funeral.
I offer these images as a tribute to his memory.

All images of Frank and of his work come from a catalog of a posthumous exibition held at the Alberta College of Art in Calgary, where we both taught.


Mirror Image, 1979 Room Interior with Self Portrait, 1979 Mums II, 1983 April Pattern, 1983 April, Bragg Creek, 1983
Figure and Shadow, 1980 Bragg Creek Storm, 1979


Spruce Trees
May, Sibbald Flats, 1983

In the early 70's, Frank and a few of us started cross country skiing in the beautiful region so well 
(re)presented in his paintings.
Frank was no athlete! One day, we were trying to teach him to snow plow.
This was on a moderately steep slope.
There was a small ravine at the bottom, which could easily be avoided with a simple turn, right or left.
As I saw him head straight for that ravine, I skied next to him shouting "turn Frank, turn!"
"I am, I am" he said, all along going straight and crashing into the ravine.
He was not hurt, just full of snow.
He fell into that ravine at least a dozen times before finally being able to do a snowplow turn.
Never once did he complain, the thought of "giving up" did not even appear.
He had a great time (and that was contagious).

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