Pat Fairhead

Pat Fairhead came to Canada from England when she was 10 years old. Two days after arriving in Toronto she went to Muskoka and fell in love with the Canadian landscape. This sparked a life-long love affair with the wilderness.

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At age 15 she was accepted to the Ontario College of Art (now OCADU) but had to wait until she turned 16 before she could attend. She has an M.Ed. from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, and an M.A. from Goddard College, Vermont.

Inspiration for her work has lured her to the Arctic nine times. She has paddled up the west coast of British Columbia and a section of the Amazon River. She has hiked the outback of Australia, explored South Africa, Namibia, and Botswana, sailed down the Nile and toured Europe, with many trips to England. She has travelled Canada East to West and back.


Pat’s incredible talent has been recognized through her career. Her first recognition came at the age of 16 with a proficiency prize from the Ontario College of Art. She was elected to the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour in 1966, and the Society of Artists in 1986. She is a member of the Royal Canadian Academy since 1993 and notably was awarded the A.J. Casson Medal for Excellence in Watercolour in 2011.


During her career Pat has had 70 solo shows nationally and internationally. Her work can be found in the Royal Collection of Prints and Drawings at Windsor Castle, England, and is represented in at least 200 corporate collections, government buildings and universities.