|ARTIST BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH: ||Robert Guest was a noted landscape painter. His drawings and paintings were inspired by the summers he worked on fire lookout towers in Alberta, including a decade at Willmore Wilderness Park north of Jasper. He translated his memories of forest fires, moonlit nights, and the changing seasons into a living visual record of Alberta’s Peace Country.
Guest’s landscapes display all the moods, textures, colours and sublime effects of nature. His work distilled the essence of place, and revealed the mystery found in nature, and his nocturnes were widely recognized for their ability to capture the light, the colour, and all the nuance of darkness.
In 1995, Robert Guest worked tirelessly with Lone Pine Publishing to release Trail North: A Journey in Words and Pictures – a book combining Guest’s paintings and drawings, as well as his collection of stories and anecdotes, of the historic Hinton Trail. Guest hiked more than 340 kilometers of the trail over a period of seven years, and mapped, sketched, then painted the historic and scenic trail in a series of seventy-two works. Guest cited the Hinton Trail book project as one of the highlights of his career, and spoke of how around “every bend of the river, there is a painting.”
Guest’s art career spanned four decades and he contributed greatly to the strengthening and growth of Alberta’s artistic community. He was instrumental in the formation of the Peace Watercolour Society and the Prairie Gallery Society (now the Art Gallery of Grande Prairie), and was one of the first visual art instructors at Grande Prairie Regional College. He moved to Grande Cache in the nineties, and there he founded the Grande Cache Watercolour Society and continued to teach and volunteer widely. His deep commitment to his art and his community was unwavering.