About the Men Who Paint
American artist Edward Hopper once said, “If I could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint.”This is a sentiment shared by five Saskatchewan painters—Cam Forrester, Greg Hargarten, Paul Trottier, Roger Trottier and Ken Van Rees—who together form the group Men Who Paint. These men have explored the the iconic and the isolated parts of Canada, to capture the essence and emotion of this country’s landscapes on canvas.Inspired by the work and adventurous spirit of the early Canadian painters such as Tom Thomson, AJ Casson, and Lauren Haris, the group has embraced plein air painting and has been braving the elements (and the mosquitoes) since 2007.The group’s initial spiritual home, the now defunct U of S Kenderine Campus at Emma Lake in their home province of Saskatchewan, served as a base for early trips. From there, the artists made their way to northern destinations in Prince Albert National Park and onto the Canadian Shield at Lac La Ronge. Soon, they were planning three to four painting expeditions a year and traveling further afield.Their extensive travels have now seen them paint across Canada at locations both renowned and remote, including the Rocky Mountains of Alberta, the ancient villages of Haidi Gwaii in British Columbia, the badlands of Saskatchewan, Ontario’s storied Algonquin Park, Georgian Bay, the Beaufort Sea, Ellesmere Island, and Yukon’s Ivvavik National Park.Although the artistic experience of the group is varied–some are professionally schooled in the arts while others build on their natural interest and affinity for expressing the environment–they all thrive in the collective dynamic. Their influence on each other has been immeasurable, yet each artist’s style has remained distinctive. And, no matter what direction each member is pursuing at any give time, they all come together several times a year to travel and paint plein air.Their work is held in private, corporate and museum collections in Canada and abroad.