Advanced Search:

Regular Search
❮ Go Back to Listings


Born: Oct 12, 1937

Date of Passing: Sep 17, 2005

Offer Condolences or Memory Make a donation to Winnipeg Humane Society Winnipeg Humane Society

Adjust Text Size: A+ A-

PROFESSOR CHARLES WALTER SCOTT Do not stand and weep for me for I am not gone, just changed. Stay still and feel me in the warm rays of the sun, in the whistle of the locomotive, in the gentle breeze of the wind rustling the leaves and remember me with fondness and laughter. Peacefully, in the arms of his wife Ruth and daughters Anna and Arloe, Professor Charles Walter Scott, 'Charlie' died at his home on September 17, 2005. Charlie was predeceased by his daughter, Sirshe in 1975 and his son, Barry in 2004. 'Charlie' was born October 12, 1937, in Massachusetts, as he jokingly put it, east-south-east of Winnipeg near the continental shore . He was the eldest son of Mildred and Walter Scott and brother to David and Arthur. His youth was spent in Sturbridge, an area whose history, environment, and the literary minds of Emerson and Thoreau would ceaselessly impact his life. His fondness for mechanical drawing first led him to study Engineering at Northeastern University. Working for a local architect and discovering that his true love was with the structure rather than the applied mathematics, Charlie applied to and was accepted into Architecture at Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). It was during one summer break, when he was working at a youth camp in the White Mountains of New Hampshire that he was first introduced to ceramics. While the young people were away I went and visited a local pottery. They invited me to throw a pot. It was a disaster! His love of the outdoors, of being with nature, of living a simple life immediately fuelled an interest in living quietly as an artist, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. In his fourth year at RISD he would try his hand again at clay and this time, he was hooked at playing with mud . The real problem was telling his parents that he was once again switching majors! Skeptical but reassured by Lyle Perkins that there were opportunities for ceramic artists, Charlie's parents bowed to his dream and followed their son's career proudly as he graduated from RISD and went on to receive his MFA from Alfred University in 1964. It was during his time as a graduate student that Charlie grasped that his fondness for structure and vessels were intertwined. Vessels were expressions of hollow spaces. They have a functional space in a similar way to that of architecture . He had wanted to design homes, intimate spaces for people to live in, now he was designing ceramics whose function was intimate, pots that would please people. The greatest challenge was making the cup, the one that a person could hold in their hand, an object that would give them pleasure and cause them to contemplate life quietly with a good feeling inside. The young man, keen to vindicate his choice of ceramics and prove that there were opportunities for people who liked to play with mud, accepted the first of three job offers in case no others came about . His love of the countryside prompted him to turn down offers with a New York university because it was too near a big city and with the Peace Corps. Instead he decided to accept the offer from Richard Williams and the School of Art at the University of Manitoba. Working with Richard Williams, Director of the School of Art at the time, and Ron Burke, he helped with the move of the ceramics area to the new Fort Garry Campus where he was instrumental in building up the ceramics area and establishing his preeminent position in the realm of wood fired vessels. Professor Scott was responsible for bringing in Robert Archambeau as an instructor and under their direction the ceramics area grew. He is remembered fondly by his students who viewed him as an inspirational force in their lives. One student recently remarked that he was a professor who was warm, kind, and deep in his thinking. Many cite him as being instrumental in career decisions, noting that he took a particular interest in our own individual creative efforts without forcing his own style or attitudes on us . Scott taught for the School of Art in both the ceramics and design areas from 1964 to 1973. It was during his first tenure at the School of Art that he travelled to Rankin Inlet as an artistic advisor, travelling in small bush planes and experiencing the wonders of the North. His knowledge of glazes and firing techniques added greatly to their artistic endeavours. Professor Scott quit teaching in 1973 in order to follow his own dream of owning and operating his own studio in Edwardsburgh, ON. Here he spent time building a large wood fired kiln and creating the warm earth toned vessels so popular during the late 1960s and 1970s. Between 1973 and 1982, in addition to operating his own busy studio, he taught ceramics at Sheridan College of Art and Design in Mississauga, ON, St. Lawrence College, Brockville, ON and the University of Ottawa. In 1982 he returned to Winnipeg to be Director of the School of Art. In 1987 he resumed his teaching duties in both ceramics and design. Professor Scott retired September 1, 2003. His ceramic work and his miniature landscapes were, during this time, exhibited throughout Canada and he was often called upon to curate exhibitions of contemporary ceramics including the anniversary exhibition, Contemporary Manitoba Art, at the Winnipeg Art Gallery in 1987. Charlie's love for the intimate and the miniature found its way into his fondness of model railways and his creation of miniature landscapes that spoke both to the challenges in his life as Director of the School of Art and his concern for our environment. He was an active member of the local model railway club, hosting events at his home and travelling to 'train' conferences across North America. His home was transformed by his attention to detail and the construction of the Boston Maine Railroad, White Mountain Division. Exact replicas of old stations and industrial buildings enhanced his layout. A new tunnel appeared in the wall last year, a fact not unnoticed by Ruth, and the Portsmouth expansion made its way into the library. Charlie spent many hours pursuing his passion for trains. A trip to Regina would take 10 hours. There was the Portage la Prairie Station, the Brandon Station and lots of rail line to enjoy the trains as they travelled east and west. Indeed, Ruth's devotion to Charlie, and her sharing of his passion for trains, prompted him to realize that it was possible for someone to love both me and them . On May 3, 2005, the couple was married after being together for five years. Charlie's passion was not limited to trains or mud. His search for the perfect barbecue and his debates over where it came from Kansas City, Texas, or Oklahoma fuelled a lifelong love of cooking. He also had a fondness for special four legged friends. His imitation of the family dog's antics were always hilarious. His cat, Boots, took up watch over Charlie as he became bedridden. Both day and night, in a comfortable chair by the bed, she refused to give up her right to be with him. Charlie's two daughters, Anna and Arloe, brought constant happiness into his life. He delighted in seeing them grow up, in cuddling with them on Christmas Eve, reading Denslow's Night Before Christmas with his own special brand of humour, and of seeing them mature into creative independent young women. His greatest joy was being at home with Ruth, Anna, Arloe, and Boots, his four women , in a household filled with laughter and love. Charlie developed a special relationship with two of his doctors over the last few years. Their dedication and appreciation for the man, Charlie, will be forever remembered by Ruth. Thank you to Dr. Lori Hilderman, her staff and colleagues, and to Dr. Brian Penner for their outstanding personal care and support. Charlie's ashes will be joined with those of his daughter Sirshe and son Barry. A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, September 25 at the University of Manitoba Faculty Club from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Parking is free in most lots on Sunday, Lot D is closest to the Faculty Club. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Winnipeg Humane Society or a charity of your choice. Arrangements entrusted to: VOYAGE FUNERAL HOME and CREMATORIUM 1531 Pembina Hwy. 284-7500

Make a donation to Winnipeg Humane Society

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Sep 20, 2005

Condolences & Memories (2 entries)

  • While recently looking for the obituary of his University of Manitoba, School of Art colleague, Robert Archambeau, I came upon Charlie’s own obituary. I just wanted to say, “Thank you, Charlie for your flexibility, patience, and insight.” It was you, who with your calm demeanour, opened my eyes regarding a certain junior teaching colleague in my first year in art school. It was you, who listened to my case for competing my undergraduate thesis in ceramics earlier than was the norm. Learning about your love for trains while reading your obituary will forever have me listening to the whistle of a train and the clickity clack of the track thinking of you. - Posted by: Donald Burroughs (Student) on: May 16, 2022

  • Charlie will be missed by all at the School of Art, University of Manitoba. - Posted by: Debra Henry Taylor (Co-Worker) on: Sep 21, 2005

❮ Go Back to Listings