Prominent Canadian painter and printmaker Christopher Pratt dies at 86 – Smithers Interior News

Christopher Pratt, esteemed Canadian painter and designer of the provincial flag of Newfoundland and Labrador, has died aged 86.

The entertainer died Sunday at his home on the Salmonier River in Newfoundland, his family said in a statement released later that day.

“Hailed from an early age as one of Canada’s finest painters and printmakers, he was faithful to his craft throughout his life,” the statement read. “Until the day when he could no longer get there on his own, he went every morning without fail to his studio. He taught us to look and see. He will be missed every day.”

Pratt is survived by his brother, four children, 11 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

The family statement says his “best friend and sometimes wife,” fellow painter Mary Pratt, died in 2018.

As a painter and printmaker, Christopher Pratt often explored landscapes, architecture and the body.

Toronto’s Mira Godard Gallery, which celebrates 60 years of promoting the Canadian art world, has represented Pratt for more than five decades.

Owner and manager Gisella Giacalone, who shared a close professional relationship and friendship with Pratt, said she was “completely heartbroken” by his death.

“I’m a huge fan of his work on top of all that; he was a dedicated and talented artist,” she said in an interview.

“He is one of Canada’s greatest artists and had a profound influence on Canadian art,” she added. “He had so much artistic integrity, and I think you see that in the work. He produced many memorable and important works that will last forever.

Pratt’s work is exhibited at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, The Rooms in St. John’s and the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.

Due to a notable love for his home province, which also impacted his work, Pratt was asked in 1980 to design the flag of Newfoundland which still flies today.

“Although he rarely admitted it, he was always thrilled to see his design soar above private properties across the province, or carried triumphantly by Newfoundlanders and Labradorians around the world,” said the family.

“He was never bothered by what politicians thought, but he was flattered and proud when the people of Newfoundland and Labrador adopted the flag as their own.”

In recognition of his extensive work, Pratt was made a Companion of the Order of Canada in 1983 and a recipient of the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2018.

Sadaf Ahsan, The Canadian Press

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Betty K. Park