December 10, 2013

Happy Joyful Holiday Season! As I was  strolling down Grace Street, outside St. Francis Hall there stood what seemed to be a larger than life Nativity Scene. Holy Frankincense and Myrr!! I would love to know about the artists who created these formidable Magi. Rather unsettling:)


Another month flew by. November was fall auction month and I was able to attend and witness some great auction house excitement at Waddingtons and Heffels . I am always pleased to see a wee Tom Thomson sketch – such treasures – go for $1.5M and the astounding $3M for the Emily Carr was cause for much applause. Works of rarity but not necessarily from the standard canon of Canadian artists reached much higher prices than estimated signalling a confidence in our national art market. In particular, Frederick Alexcee’s ‘Pole Raising at Fort Simpson, BC’ c. 1900, a prime work of historical significance. I spent some extra time examining this oil on canvas at the preview show. It is an engaging work, charming and elegant and a delight to see in real time.

alexcee pole raising

The other surprise was the W.J.Phillips colour woodcut ‘Karlukwees’, c. 1909, again selling for 3 times the estimate. William Kurelek is hot, hot, hot!! It is clear that collectors remain interested in historically documented art or are purely sentimental. Also happy to see Rita Letendre’s works sell well. She is one of my faves.  In the big bad world of multi million sales, Canadian art seems like a bargain – but I am pleased to report that the auction houses were full and busy with active bidders.

The other great event – in my neighbourhood – was the opening of Artscape Youngplace. So pleased that an abandoned school has been repurposed into a community hub of activity. Check it out! and read a review.

And finally, no this is not a photo from Halloween but a recent pic on the streetcar home one chilly evening. I call it Blue Bear Hat.


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