Painted Horse

To have a freedom, is to have unrestricted independence over a situation or decision.A perfect example of which, is the freedom of choice which all living things have.Alex Colville's painting, "Horse and Train", provokes a sense of wonder in the viewer by leaving them guessing what the outcome of this scene will be.In this scene, "the horse is free to change direction, the engineer to engage brakes" (National, 2000).Alex Colville's, "Horse and Train", symbolizes one's freedom to make choices.
"Alex Colville was born in Toronto in 1920 and grew up in Amherst, Nova Scotia, where his family moved in 1929" (National, 2000).His main influence in painting came after university when he became a war artist.He was sent to such places as the "the liberated Belsen concentration camp" (National Film, 1983), where he painted such soldiers and the deceased.Painting in such environments would bring out emotions and thoughts relating to such issues as, life, death, peace, and war.The theory of life and death can be seen quite apparently in Colville's "Horse and Train".
Many questions regarding life and death are brought up by viewing this painting.Why is this horse running straight at the train?"Is it memorized by the light?Is it challenging a foe?Is it aware of the terrible danger?If not, can the engineer stop the train in time?" (National, 2000).By interpreting the horse's thoughts one can realize that the horse is contemplating a serious decision between life and death.The horse, in a way, is raging against the machine.It's war is not against the train itself, but the idea of the industrial revolution in general.The horse is depicted as being, black, well-muscled, and confident.In the past, the horse's uses were infinite.It was the main mode of transportation, it tilled the farmer's fields, and it was …


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