For the first time in its 53-year history, the Ashcroft Art Club Show and Sale had to be postponed this year, and while members of the club are still hoping there might be a “live” show later in 2020, a virtual art show will be taking place starting on Monday, June 15, proving that art — like life — will find a way.
Marianne Munro, secretary of the Art Club, says that the idea for a virtual show came from club president Heidi Roy.
“We’d planned a regular meeting to do planning for the art show, but had to cancel that because of COVID-19. Then we got to thinking that perhaps we needed to look at postponing the show, because we have more than 50 show up on opening night, so how do we do social distancing?
“We made the decision to postpone the show, not cancel it. Club members started talking about maybe booking a show for September, but we thought that the danger of doing that would be having to keep cancelling it. Heidi is very tech literate, and involved with our website, and she came up with the idea of a very simple art show online.”
Roy says that the idea came to her because people were telling her how much they would miss the show.
“People said they looked forward to it. It’s an important annual event. The artists have been busy painting, and wanted to show their work, and we wanted to spread some positivity. There’s a lot of negative news, so we wanted to spread some art for a bit of happier news.”
Munro says the next step was talking to the artists to find out who was interested in a virtual show and who was able to submit work; something a few artists had reservations about.
“Taking pictures of art is tough. Some people do a good job, and some don’t. Lighting is the biggest thing when photographing art. In one of my paintings the colour was orange in the actual artwork but it looked coral in the picture.”
Munro and Roy sent out some simple instructions, and were able to help artists with fixing and cropping pictures. “We said we’d go and take pictures for them, but most people were able to send them,” notes Munro. “We left it open to everyone.
Eleven artists will be taking part, with one major difference between the virtual and live shows being that each artist can only submit a total of three works, as opposed to the 10 they can usually submit. “We’re not sure how long we’ll be keeping the paintings up,” says Munro, noting that as with the regular show, the works on display will be available for purchase.
“Depending on the feedback, we could keep it up all summer, and if we sell one painting we could put up another. We’re kind of winging it. It’s new to us and certainly new to our artists. If people like it, who’s to say we can’t have items online even when we have the [regular] art show.”
A link on the Ashcroft Art Club website’s front page will direct people to the gallery, which will include information about each work, such as the title, name of the artist, size, medium, and price, as well as a link to the artist’s website if applicable. Anyone interested in purchasing an item can do so via a form on the website.
“It would be great to make sales, but we’re mostly just trying to provide positivity at this time,” says Munro. “People have said they missed the art show, and asked when can we have one or when will we be able to have one. It will be something to see when you’re at home.”
Munro says she has “absolutely” been painting during the pandemic. “When you’re an artist you want to just paint. I’ve taken some online courses, and my daughter is an artist as well, so we’ve been doing some challenges online. I know a lot of artists have been doing work or taking workshops, keeping up with their art. I think it’s in us.”
Marilyn Anderson is another artist who didn’t stop painting during COVID-19. “I have three pieces [for the show] that I’ve never shown before, but it was difficult to go from 10 down to three,” she says. “I’ve got quite a few new pieces, and was very happy to hear we were doing a virtual show.”
Anderson is submitting three larger pieces, one of which depicts Indian war horses: her first time painting an Aboriginal subject. She says that she’s gone back to painting animals after doing landscapes for a while, and has been working on a series of artworks that can be put together or shown separately. This will be her second appearance at the Ashcroft Art Show, after making her debut there in 2019, when she was named a runner-up in the People’s Choice category, and she’s looking forward to having a display of her work at the Sidewalk Gallery in Ashcroft in October.
She admits that getting pictures of her works to submit for the online show was a challenge.”Natural light is what makes for the best picture, but it wasn’t so much the lighting as getting the artwork completely flat so it wasn’t distorted in any way. But I think that having a virtual art show is great.”
Roy says that while she hasn’t done much painting in the last couple of months, she had done a lot over the winter in the months leading up to the art show, traditionally held at the end of April. “People look forward to displaying their works, and getting submissions from members. It was difficult to just pick three.”
However, she agrees with Munro that if a number of works sell, they can look at swapping them out with new works. “And we’re still holding out hope for a show, so we’re holding back work for the fall. It’s wait and see, because no one really knows what’s happening with regulations [about gatherings], and we like to have works that haven’t been seen before. If we had all the works in the virtual show, then if we did have [an actual show] in the fall people wouldn’t have many new works to show.
“But it depends on the club and on scheduling. Fall could be busy with events that have been put off going ahead.”
Roy says she hopes that the virtual art show will be an exciting opportunity for the community to see art virtually, if not in person, and Munro agrees.
“We thought this would bring a little light,” she says. “That’s all we can do, and we’re excited about it. It’s pretty new and pretty different.”
The Ashcroft Art Club’s Virtual Show and Sale will go live at 6 p.m., the traditional opening time for the annual show, on Monday, June 15. For information and to view the gallery, go to the Ashcroft Art Club’s website at http://www.ashcroftartclub.com/.
Passionate about art and how to frame it – paNOW
Zelensky recently purchased Christina Thoen’s framing business and the building its situated in.
“The art school is busy and she [Thoen] was looking for help and it just seemed to be a good fit. I love the framing end of it, and I saw a vision of offering space for other artist to sell their art and it just progressed from there. After spending the past seven years as an art student of Christina’s, I definitely feel a connection…it’s comfortable.” Zelensky said.
Various local artists are featured on the walls. At least four of them are students from Thoen’s art school and Zelensky predicts more local artisans will be looking to find good and safe options to display their work in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, when art shows or trade shows can’t take place.
“Taking possession of the business in mid-April allowed me to ease into the business and determine what would be best for the artists and my customers. I am always looking at the precautions and making sure customers and artists feel safe coming in,” she said.
She invites any artists wanting to display and sell their work to visit her in store for available gallery space. Supporting local artisans and what she calls ‘phenomenal talent’ in and around Prince Albert is a win-win for Zelensky. Artists benefit from her customers and she can add life and visual interest to the pieces through her frame work. But, it is not just the local artwork Zelensky helps to enhance….
The right frame, mount and mat forms can add life and visual interest to pictures as well. Zelensky said now is the perfect time to sort out those special moments you have always meant to get framed. Whether it’s beautiful art from your kids or family photos, she can help showcase the treasured pieces through the framing process.
Born and raised in and around Prince Albert, Zelensky believes in supporting local. She and her husband farm northeast of the city where they raised their four children.
“I love this town and the diversity it offers.”
The shop is equipped with proper barriers for safe in-person consultations or customers can leave their prints with Zelensky and choose to do a consult by video call.
Currently, custom frame orders for grad photos are being discounted by 20 per cent.
Sandra’s Framing, Gallery and Gifts is located 625 Brandon Drive. Visit the Facebook page or give Sandra a call at (639) 739-7599.
*This content was created by paNOW’s commercial content division.
Barrie bylaw demands 10-year-old's Canadian flag art be removed from city property – CTV News
BARRIE, ONT. —
Erin van Kessel said she was sitting outside her north-end Barrie home Thursday morning when a bylaw officer handed her a warning.
The Barrie resident was told she would have to remove chalk art of a Canadian flag drawn by her 10-year-old daughter to celebrate Canada Day.
“2004-142-2,” recited van Kessel, while looking over the document citing her infraction. The city’s bylaw for that particular code refers to the use of public property.
“No person shall throw, drop, place, or otherwise deposit garbage, paper, paper or plastic products, cans, rubbish, or other debris on any city property unless authorized by the city,” she read.
Van Kessel said large green plastic objects, which may have been children’s items left at the curb near the end of her driveway, did not belong to her.
The issue with the chalk art, however, has left her disappointed.
Van Kessel was told by the bylaw officer someone had complained about the chalk art spray painted on the lawn at the end of her driveway.
The chunk of grass, painted red and white, is city property.
“They couldn’t really say why. I mean, mostly because it is on city property, but really?” said van Kessel in response to the bylaw violation.
Van Kessel was told she had 24 hours to remove her daughter’s chalk painting from the lawn or face a potential fine.
Van Kessel said her daughter is distraught and doesn’t understand why it needs to be removed.
“Not too happy,” said van Kessel. “Because she did put a lot of work into it, and now we have to remove it. It’s a child doing something exciting when she’s been stuck in the house for four months, and no school, no friends, so what more is there to do?”
The City of Barrie confirmed a complaint was made, and a bylaw officer visited the home, providing the following statement to CTV News:
“The city’s enforcement services received and responded to a complaint about individuals painting on city property.
Bylaw officers are obligated to investigate and respond to all complaints received. While the homeowner advised that the paint was washable, the officer was unable to confirm if it was or not, which was why the property owner was warned that they had 24 hours to remove it from the city’s boulevard.
A warning was issued to the property owner, not the child.”
Van Kessel said she does intend to remove the artwork.
“I guess other people don’t appreciate it or look at it the same way we do,” she said.
“What can you do? I guess it’s the way of the world these days.”
MSS adds three to permanent art collection – Merritt Herald – Merritt Herald
Three Merritt Secondary students have had their pieces inducted into the MSS permanent art collection.
Kaleb Hall Moses, Janelle Gage, and Sedona Reed all had their art entered into the hallowed hall, a yearly tradition for the MSS art department.
The collection goes by the name ‘the Margaret Reynoldson Collection.’ The submitted pieces are judged by a jury of art lovers, while the chosen pieces are purchased from the students.
Representatives from the high school said that the current pandemic did not discourage students from submitting their pieces this year, which they originally did digitally.
Each chosen piece is to be professionally framed and given a plaque providing the artist’s name and year of creation.
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