Stampede goers can check out the Visual Arts Show on Friday and Saturday this coming weekend.
The Visual Arts Show for the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede runs Friday 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Cypress Centre Auditorium. There is no entry fee for the grounds this year.
Leslie Mayer, chair of the Stampede’s visual arts committee, said there will be more than 30 artists coming in to display their work from Medicine Hat and surrounding area.
“There’s going to be a variety of local artists, sculptors, woodworkers. We’ve got watercolour painters and oil painters. There will be framed artwork, and there will be quilts and woodworking on display.”
Mayer said that in years past, the event was a judged show, but this year it’s a show and sale.
“The artists are coming in and you’ll have an opportunity to speak to the artists and get to know them a little bit,” said Mayer. “They will be manning their tables and everything they have on their tables will be for sale.”
Mayer said once the artwork is purchased, it can be claimed and taken by the buyer immediately. All work must be original to be included in the show and artists from several different local art clubs will be there, such as Strathcona Watercolour Art Club, Hat Art Club and the Medicine Hat Fibre Arts Association.
June Burns, who has been involved with the Visual Arts Show in a number of ways over the last decade, is looking forward to being able to display her artwork this year.
“I am a watercolourist. I do other things but I primarily do watercolour,” said Burns. “This year I have a little bit of landscape, a little bit of floral, I have a ballerina. It’s a variety.”
Burns has been interested in art since a young age, but took it up more intensely after she retired from her chartered accountant practice in 2012.
“There’s a great variety of artists,” Burns said. “There’s some very well known local artists, but it also allows the lesser know artists to show their paintings and I would consider myself in that group, so I’m just absolutely thrilled to be able to attend and display my work.”
Loretta Fix is a Medicine Hat artist who has been participating in the Art Show for more than 15 years, does landscape, still and florals in oils, watercolour and acrylic.
“I also do something called encaustic wax, which is really old art process, about 3,000 years old, it’s very interesting,” Fix explained.
“I am most excited about seeing the folks we usually see, and the other artists that I talk to and work with over the year. I haven’t had a chance to do that. It will be nice to see those familiar faces again.”
Mayer encourages Hatters to come out and see the Visual Art Show in its new format this year.
“I think everybody would enjoy it, it’s something totally different,” Mayer said. “We’ve never done anything like this before. Maybe we’ll be doing this again.”
LAUREN THOMSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News