Keeper of the Land – 25 x 33-3/4; Original Lithograph; Edition Size 290; $3300.00 U.S.
“What I notice most in nature is its variety – each square inch in a landscape has its own particular texture and sculptural quality. The grizzly is a landscape-like animal; each part of the animal has different qualities.
This hand pulled lithograph is so closely connected to what is going on in the Stein River Valley, one of the most beautiful and pristine valleys in British Columbia – probably in all the west coast of North America. The Stein River Valley runs in from the coast of southwest British Columbia to the intersection of the Fraser and Thompson Rivers; all three rivers are rich with salmon. Along the banks of the Stein River are as yet untouched, unspoiled old-growth forests. All kinds of wildlife, including mountain goats, grizzlies and mule deer, live an undisturbed existence there.
The Stein Valley has also been the ancestral headwaters of two Indian bands, the Lytton and the Mount Currie, for thousands of years. Burial caves with pictographs have recently been discovered in the area, so it is a land that is significant and sacred both to the native peoples of British Columbia and to natural history. This sacred place is now slated to be logged. Many people have become concerned about the logging of the Stein Valley. I made this original lithograph to bring attention to the dangers threatening the Stein Valley and its inhabitants.
I thought a mountain goat would be the most suitable choice of subjects as its white coat would contrast well with the darker background of the piece. I spoke with committee members of the Stein Valley Cultural Centre Project, and my idea was presented
to the local native Indian chiefs. The chiefs said, “Oh no, don’t let him do a mountain goat; a mountain goat is nothing. Have him do a grizzly because the grizzly bear is the keeper of the land.” I said, “Wow, that’s great. That’s what we should all be – keepers of the land.”
What I notice most in nature is its variety – each square inch in a landscape has its own particular texture and sculptural quality. The grizzly is a landscape-like animal; each part of the animal has different qualities. I enjoyed showing the play of light and shade in the textures on his face. I chose a close-up
view of the head and shoulders of the grizzly to show the expression of the grizzly’s face, he is dignified yet concerned. I felt that the piece at the bottom of this original print was essential as it places the grizzly – the keeper – in his landscape.” – Robert Bateman
Robert Bateman has been called the most famous living artist. He continues to paint and tour the world to promote conservation and preservation of nature. We have represented Robert Bateman for decades and are now the sole publisher and distributor of his reproductions. We are so honored to work with him and witness his success. He has made such a massive contribution to the art world and the natural world as an artist and educator of the earth’s most important resources.
Nature as a subject is becoming more and more popular as our environment is in peril. What better subject is there than the beautiful creatures we share this world with? Robert Bateman’s appreciation and understanding of nature are apparent in his paintings. He is able to paint flora and fauna the way your eye would perceive it in real life. It is important that the animal takes full attention. The background becomes muted, and therefore it doesn’t take too much focus away from the subject. His paintings seem effortless and masterful all at once.
Bateman’s eye for composition is unparalleled. Each painting is a composed like a symphony, leading the eye to wander. From the backyards of North America to the sprawling plains of Africa. Robert Bateman captures nature the way it should be enjoyed. Above all he is a champion of wildlife. For this reason he has become a household name for art collectors.