Robert Bateman, renowned artist, conservationist and teacher has turned 90-years-old. (Bateman Foundation)

VIDEO: Trudeau, Atwood say ‘happy birthday’ to wildlife artist Robert Bateman

Famed Canadian artist celebrated May 23

A legendary, naturalist and artist with connections to Victoria has turned 90 years old.

Robert Bateman turned 90 on May 24, an occasion the Bateman Foundation calls an “incredible milestone” for an “iconic painter and conservation champion.”

Bateman may be known for his evocative portrayals of the natural world, but his conservation and preservation work has earned the renowned artist recognition by the Audubon Society as one of the 20th century’s “heroes of conservation.”

His art has raised millions for environmental causes and at 90, Bateman still paints, talks about and advocates for wildlife, harnessing the power of his profile for a timeless and vital cause.

Bateman’s work has also earned him friends in high places. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canadian literary sensation Margaret Atwood and world-famous conservationist David Suzuki are just some of the faces to appear in a short ‘Happy Birthday’ video celebrating nine decades of the Canadian naturalist.

READ ALSO: Bateman Foundation reflects on 2019, looks ahead to the new year

Located in Victoria’s Inner Harbour, the Bateman Foundation Gallery of Nature features rotating nature exhibits including Bateman’s work. Locals and tourists alike stop in to the historic building for a glimpse of artwork capturing details of the wild and often unreachable natural world.

The foundation also promotes nature education across the country. Bateman himself worked as a high school art and geography teacher for two decades, and his finely articulated and enthusiastic philosophies on life and nature inspire the foundation’s programs including the newest one, Sketch Across Canada.

The program’s goal is to get 33,000 Canadians (also the number of days one has lived when they turn 90) to “venture outside and become bright-eyed three-year-olds again.”

For those who want to celebrate his 90th birthday, the Bateman Foundation welcomes donations for its nature programs at batemanfoundation.org/support-us/.

Nature-enthusiasts can also send Bateman a personal birthday message by sketching their own nature drawing and posting it to social media with the hashtag #mynaturesketch.

READ ALSO: Robert Bateman Centre re-brands to promote mission of ‘reconnecting people to the natural world’

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

artist

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sumas First Nation pilots eight-inch gill-net fishery in Sumas/Vedder River

Project in Abbotsford renews fishing practice and data gathering of chinook salmon

Chilliwack home built in 1910 will be saved from demolition

The 110-year-old house on Hope River Road is being relocated to nearby Riverside Drive

Abbotsford woman starts petition to have B.C. government help with IVF costs

Jennifer Kuiken says cost of in vitro fertilization is too high for most people

Asbestos bags dumped along Mission road

Keystone Road has seen illegal dumping before, says local man

Police watchdog investigating after Abbotsford man seriously injured during arrest

Abbotsford police used ‘less lethal firearm’ and dog in arrest of man believed to have gun

21 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. as virus ‘silently circulates’ in broader community

Health officials urge British Columbians to enjoy summer safely as surge continues

Tough time for tree fruits as some B.C. farm products soar

Province reports record 2019 sales, largely due to cannabis

‘Let’s all do a self-check’: Okanagan mayor reacts to racist vandalism targeting local family

Home of Indo-Canadian family in Summerland was targeted on evening of July 13

Province agrees to multimillion-dollar payout for alleged victims of Kelowna social worker

Robert Riley Saunders is accused of misappropriating funds of children — often Indigenous — in his care

B.C. businessman David Sidoo gets 3 months behind bars for college admissions scam

Sidoo was sentenced for hiring someone take the SATs in place of his two sons

PHOTOS: Inside a newly-listed $22M mega-mansion on ALR land in B.C.

The large home, located on ALR land, is one of the last new mansions to legally be built on ALR land

COVID-19 gives B.C. First Nation rare chance to examine tourism’s impact on grizzly bears

With 40 infrared cameras deployed in Kitasoo-Xai’Xais territory, research will help develop tourism plan with least impact on bears

RCMP searching for culprit behind needle-filled lemons left on Coquitlam-area trails

The two lemons found were thrown away leaving police with little evidence

NDP wants Lower Mainland MLA removed from BC Liberal caucus for alleged homophobia

BC Liberal leader, some MLAs apologize for Christian magazine ads but Laurie Throness doubles down

Most Read