Royal Collection

A portfolio of watercolours by CSPWC members is part of the permanent collection of Her Majesty the Queen at Windsor Castle. These seventy five watercolours are held within the fabled Royal Library as “The Canadian Gift”.The Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour is one of the few organizations outside of the United Kingdom to be represented in the Royal Collections.The project was conceived during the planning for the Society’s 60th Anniversary in 1985 during the Presidency of Gery Puley. The original plan was to place a juried collection of sixty watercolours in a permanent Canadian home. As it became apparent that the Society could not afford the financial endowment requirements of the Canadian institutions that were approached an alternative had to be considered. On the initiative of Anthony Batten H.M., The Queen was approached through the Keeper of the Queen’s Pictures, Sir Robin MacWorth-Young, on the basis that while several Commonwealth countries were well represented within the Royal Collections there was no equivalent Canadian presence. The Queen accepted the portfolio and there was an official hand-over at Ontario House, London in 1985. A selection of these paintings went on display in the Queen’s Gallery, Windsor Castle, later that year.To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Society in 2000, Anthony Batten again came to the fore. He organized a national competition to add to the collection so that it would contain a painting for every year of the Society’s life. Over eighty artists from across the country, who were not represented in the original portfolio, submitted work. Out of these, fifteen paintings were selected.

The fifteen paintings were unveiled at the gala 75th anniversary dinner at the Arts and Letters Club, attended by Hilary Weston, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario on November 11th, 2000. The paintings were exhibited to the public at the O’Connor Gallery, Toronto later in the year.

During December of 2001, the paintings were shown at Canada House in Trafalgar Square, London. On December 10th Prince Charles officially accepted the works on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen. Following the official hand-over Prince Charles invited the CSPWC members who were in London to be his guests at Highgrove two days later to see his own watercolours aand tour the house and its collections

In 2002 Anthony Batten was awarded a Queens Golden Jubilee Medal for his work on this project.

members with prince
Artists attending the official presentation of work to Prince Charles.
60 paintings are presented to the Collection of Her Majesty the Queen at Ontario House, London, 1986. From left: CSPWC president Osvald Timmas, Agent-General for Ontario Tom Wells, and Cultural Attache Diana Jervis Read.
Ross Monk and Bonnie Brooks with Prince Charles.
neville clarke
Neville Clarke presents Prince Charles with a book of watercolours by CSPWC Presidents.

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