War memorial paintings find home at college

Social in conjunction with the unveiling of 31 impressive paintings

31 new paintings grace Barronial Hall

Photos taken by Matt Telfser

Symbolic Oil Paintings Find a Home at RMC

By: Cody Reed

RMC inaugurated a permanent exhibit of 31 oil paintings depicting Canadian War Memorials on Wednesday, April 7, 2010. The works of art were donated by Montreal based artist Mr. F.A. (Tex) Dawson and are painted on a variety of canvases.

Mr. Dawson is a veteran of the Second World War who saw action in North-West Europe with the 7th Medium Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery. Upon the year 2005 being declared “The Year of the Veteran”, he decided he would undertake a series of oil paintings representing Cenotaphs from all across the country, as both a tribute and personal commemoration.

“I thank the college for accepting the paintings,” said Dawson. “I really just enjoy painting, I did think of my brother while I was painting them, he died in the war, one reason I painted them for ‘Year of the Veteran’ ”

Unfortunately without requested funding from Veterans’ Affairs Canada or corporate sponsorship, Dawson could only include paintings from Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada but hopes to add some from Western Canada in the future.

Dawson offered the paintings to different government and veterans’ groups but none seemed interested. After it occurred to him RMC may be interested, Dawson called Ross McKenzie, RMC Museum curator and was told that RMC would gladly take the paintings. The 31 paintings now hang in Baronial Hall in the Currie Building.

Professor J. G. (Jack) Pike, Professor of the Emeritus Department of Mechanical Engineering and Chairman of the RMC Museum Committee, introduced Dawson and his artwork at the opening ceremony.

“These paintings bring the remembrance of service and sacrifice to the forefront” said Pike. “They are significant in this setting and we are delighted to have them here.”

Commandant, Commodore William S. Truelove emphasized his appreciation for having the paintings displayed here at RMC and encouraged Mr. Dawson to come back to visit any time.

“I can’t think of a better place to put them,” said Commodore Truelove “These memorials represent what we at the college signed up to do and I can think of no better way to communicate that to our cadets, who are the future leaders of the Canadian Forces.”

The paintings are a significant representation of the service and sacrifice made by Canadian men and woman. Being the Academic centre for the Canadian Forces, RMC proves an appropriate spot for the exhibit. Although, the monuments represented in the paintings portray sacrifices of the past and present, they will never be forgotten and will remain at the college well into the future.

War memorial paintings find home at college

By Ian Elliot – Kingston Whig Standard

When Montreal artist and war vet F.A. (Tex) Dawson set out on a odyssey to paint 31 of the country’s war memorials in 2005, he never thought the artistic journey would be the easiest part of the effort.

He spent five years after the coast-to-coast trek trying to find a home for the paintings.

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