Quinte West, ON: Arts Quinte West (AQW) is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and with almost fifty members, we have lots to celebrate. “With many artists still finding our club for the first time, we are inviting all artists in Quinte West to join us for our Annual meeting on March 22 to learn more about us,” said Frances Luymes, longtime member of the club. “We hope all you talented, creative and appreciative arts people will come to our events as we show off our art exhibitions to the community.”
AQW was formed in 2008 by a group of enthusiastic artists in Quinte West with funding and support through the Quinte West Chamber of Commerce and Trenval Business Development Corporation. The artists made a commitment to see the organization grow so it could promote local artists, arts in general and culture. They began in 2010 to offer memberships and a constitution was adopted in 2010. The group incorporated as a not for profit in 2012 and with ongoing funding from the City of Quinte West and administrative support from the Quinte West Chamber of Commerce they continue to thrive.
“As AQW heads into its’ 10th Anniversary the group is planning some special events for the year,” said Debbie Konyn, president of Arts Quinte West. “All members and other artists are invited to the meeting on March 22 at the Knights of Columbus Hall with the doors opening at 6:30pm. The guest speaker for the evening will be Mike Gaudar from Quinte Studios and everyone is invited to bring a piece of art to show to other members.” AQW members include painters, potters, photographers, performing artists, lyric composers, illustrators, art framers, children’s and novel writers and anything that is creative. “As a Board member for 6 years I have found many artist friends and looked at many unbelievable and well compositional, interesting pieces of artwork,” said Luymes. “Art entertains and attracts people from many walks of life and enhances our lives and makes us realize that maybe, I could try a hand at taking some lessons”.
Along with the various events, the Community Showcase has been a huge success for the club with many artists showing their art in various locations throughout the City. This program is managed by Mary Britt who coordinates the art that is shown at ten different locations. “Being able to show the paintings and creative work at the library and various businesses is a great way to promote art and culture in Quinte West,” said Britt, “and many of our artists are very successful at selling their art through the showcase.”
The group has many plans for the future and dream of a time when they are able to support a gallery and a salaried curator that would add to the dynamic of our town. As an example, the Marina brings people in from all over the states and other parts of Ontario and they would like to eat, shop and look at art, antiques and listen to music while they are here. 2018 Special Events for the club include the Bay of Quinte Home Show—April 27-28-29; Summer Art Show & Sale—June 9; Festival on the Bay (Art in the Park), July 21; Christmas Show & Sale—November 3; Savour Food & Drink Festival, November 9th. The Board of Directors meet bi-monthly at the Quinte West Chamber of Commerce Board Room. The next meeting is April 18 at 5 pm and they hope to have 12 artists on our Board in the future so they can better govern with new ideas and promote culture with the many creative talents of our community. To find out more go to their website www.artsquintewest.ca and join in and celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Arts Quinte West.
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