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Six Prominent Op Artists

Op Art (short for Optical Art) is an art movement that emerged in the late 1950s and early 60s. It is a distinct style of art that purposely tricks the eye, to create the illusion of movement and color. Using a variety of techniques, including precise lines, repetitive patterns, stark contrast, and perspective, these op art achieves a three-dimensional, puzzle-like quality. 1. Bridget Riley Concentrate on Bridget Riley’s “Dominance Portfolio, Blue” (1977) for even a…

The World’s Greatest Paintings

Personal taste has a lot to do, of course, with what we each think makes a painting great. There are, however, some paintings that have stood the test of time, and are considered today to be among the world’s greatest paintings. Here are just a few… 1. The Last Supper (1495) – Leonardo da Vinci This mural painting, located in the refectory of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan, Italy, was part of a…

Digital Art – A Whole New World

The invention of digital technologies has had one of the most far-reaching impacts on society, since, perhaps, the invention of electricity. Nowadays, computerized digital technology is the most common medium in photography, music, film, literature, architecture, and graphic arts. The term ‘digital art’ refers to any artistic work that uses digital technology. This very broad definition includes artworks where the final product is a digital file (ie., jpg, mp3, doc, etc.). It also refers to…

Ten Facts About the Lions Gate Bridge

In 2005, the Lions Gate Bridge was designated a National Historic Site of Canada. It is certainly one of Vancouver’s most iconic landmarks, and in fact, has quite an interesting history. Taylor’s Dream 1. The Lions Gate Bridge was the brainchild of an engineering contractor named A.J. Taylor. Born in Victoria in 1887, by the early 1920’s he had become one of Vancouver’s most successful entrepreneurs. Then Taylor set his sights on West Vancouver, realizing the…

Climate Change and Art

Increasingly, artists are using their work as commentary on the effects and threats of climate change. History is filled with artists using their voice to affect society.  For some, this means using empathy and emotion to try to reach people. For others, it’s an attempt to visualize for people what our future may look like if we don’t change course.  “Only 5 per cent of us speak about [climate change] with any regularity. We need…

Douglas Coupland’s Plastic World

The bold colours and flawless textures of plastics were, for a longtime, sources of artistic inspiration for Douglas Coupland, one of Canada’s best-known artists and writers. But after confronting the impact of discarded plastics on the northern coast of Haida Gwaii, Coupland has changed his perspective on using plastics in the context of art. As Marshal Macluhan so aptly put it in the mid-sixties, “the medium is the message“. And the message of plastic is…

Important Female Painters of the 19th & 20th Century

As is the case in most other professions, so too, female artists are generally not awarded the same level of recognition as their male counterparts. The good news is, society appears to be slowly changing it’s pervasive androcentric biases. Evidence of this can be found not just in the corporate world, but in sports, music, and other highly skilled professions, not least of which, the arts. Here are a few notable 19th and 20th century…

Stanley Park’s Surprises

Spanning over 1000 acres, the Stanley Park is certainly one of Vancouver’s most adored and beautiful attractions. The park, which juts out from the northwest corner of the downtown area, was originally called Coal Penninsula. In the mid 1860’s, it was used as a military installation to guard entrance to the harbor. The Stanley Park Hollow Tree For more than 100 years, Stanley Park’s Hollow Tree has been Vancouver’s most popular tourist attraction. This 1000-year-old…

The History of Whistler Village

Whistler Village is less than two hours drive north of Vancouver. It’s a drive offering the unspeakable beauty of coastal island and spectacular mountain vistas. A popular destination year-round, you’ll be welcomed like family, and swept up by the excitement ‘The Village’. Whether skiing, biking, canoeing, hiking, meandering through the many shops, or just relaxing in a hot tub, Whistler is a wonderful destination spot, with much to discover. Stretching from North Vancouver to the…

Counterfeit Art Fraudsters

It has been estimated that as much as 20% of all the art in museums is counterfeit. Even while today’s digital technologies make it easier to spot, counterfeit art, especially the art of the masters, is big business. It’s a practice that probably started with the ancient Romans. Roman sculptors would often copy the works of the Greek masters, and pass them off as their own. During the Renaissance, with a quickly growing middle-class, the…

The Vancouver Art Gallery

The Vancouver Art Gallery was founded in 1931, and was then located at 1145 West Georgia Street. The 165,000 square-foot building was designed by Francis Rattenbury in 1905. The beautiful neoclassical building includes Ionic columns, formal porticos, a central dome, and ornate stonework. Rattenbury also designed the British Columbia Parliament Buildings, as well as the Empress Hotel in Victoria. In 1983, VAG moved to its current Hornby Street location, formerly the home of Vancouver’s provincial courthouse. Vancouver architect, Arthur Erickson, designed the renovations…

Dogs Playing Poker

Dogs Playing Poker refers to a series of paintings by artist, C. M. Coolidge. It was commissioned in 1903 by the Brown & Bigelow marketing company Although it may not be a classic in the art world, but ‘Dogs Playing Poker’ does have quite the history. Here are some facts you may not know.  1. Created To Promote Cigars In 1903, the Brown & Bigelow advertising company he was commissioned to do some paintings for…

Banksy

Banksy is probably the world’s most famous, albeit anonymous, street artist. He is best known for his satirical graffiti  and subversive epigrams done in his distinctive, stencilling technique. These are often multi-layered, and combined with other media sources, such as spray-paint. His art is found on streets, walls, and bridges in cities throughout the world. Banksy’s work grew out of the Bristol underground scene, which involved collaborations between artists and musicians. Although in his early days he sold photos and reproductions…

Found Art

Found Art (objet trouvé) is a genre of art that refers to artworks created from everyday, often discarded, objects. In most cases, the objects used in found art originally had a non-artistic purpose. Typically, the artist will modify these ‘found objects’, or display them in a context that is decidedly different from the viewers expectations. The Origins Pablo Picasso first presaged the idea when he pasted a printed image of a chair onto his painting,…

A Brief History of Landscape Art

Landscapes are one of the most commonly painted genres in the art world. The word landscape is derived from a Dutch word, landschap, for ‘tract of land’. It was not used to refer to a genre of painting, though, until the 1500s. The ancient Greeks and Romans decorated their walls with landscapes. But, prior to the 16th century, landscapes were generally never the subject matter of paintings. The 15th century masters did incorporate landscapes as a…

The Art of the Neon Sign

In the 1930s and ’40s gleaming neon signs were to be found everywhere. The colorful, eye-catching signage imparted an air of glamour and excitement. Neon signs became the rage, and ‘main street’ establishments everywhere advertised their presence in neon lights. Within only a few short years, major avenues were transformed with the artistic illumination of these colorful signs. Neon Becomes Kitschy Barely 30 years later, however, the medium had lost much of its glamour. The…

Historic Notre Dame Fire

On April 15, 2019, a fire broke out below the roof of the Notre Dame cathedral, destroying the cathedral’s spire and roof. Thankfully, due to its vaulted ceiling made of stone, the interior of the cathedral escaped being extensively damaged. In particular, the cathedral’s three pipe organs, as well as its three 13th century stained glass windows, suffered almost no damage. French authorities ruled out any criminal culpability. Instead, it’s thought that an electrical fault,…

An Art Museum Bucket List

Cultural heritage informs and defines the identity of any society. It is the expression of a society’s history and values. That’s why, no matter what country you go to, its museums will be high on your list of interesting places to visit. Here are 10 of the world’s most significant art museums. If you are a traveller, they should all be on your ‘bucket list’. 1. Musée du Louvre – Paris, France Once the fortified…

The ‘Art’ of Photography

Photographs tell us what is important. When you ask people what possessions they would rescue from their burning house, one of the most frequent answers used to be the photograph album. Now, in the digital age, it’s just as likely to be their cel phone or computer. How interesting it is that, in a panic, we may value our photos even more than our jewelry or other personal items. The impulse to immortalize our memories…

The Story of the Theft of Mona Lisa

Leonardo da Vinci’s portrait of Lisa Gherardini, more commonly known as ‘Mona Lisa’ , has a scandalous history. Mona Lisa Discovered Missing On August 21, 1911, for instance, someone stole the Mona Lisa from The Louvre museum. French painter, Louis Béroud arrived at The Louvre the following day, on August 22nd, to make a sketch of the famous painting. However, he noticed that the painting was missing, and alerted the the guards. Authorities immediately closed…

15 Fun Facts About British Columbia

Geography 1. The length of BC’s coastline is over 27,000 kilometres. With an area of 944,735 square kilometres (364,764 sq mi), BC is Canada’s third-largest province. In fact, the province is nearly four times the size of the United Kingdom, more than twice as large as Japan, and larger than every single state in the US (except for Alaska).  2. Two-thirds of British Columbia’s land base is forested land. Surprisingly, more than half of that area has been extensively…

Group of Seven Artist – Franklin Carmichael

Franklin Carmichael was born May 4th, 1890 in Orillia, Ontario. And he remained there until his 20th birthday, when his interest in art led him to Toronto and into the Ontario College of Art. There he studied with two other noted painters: William Cruickshank and George Reid. His Early Years Group of Seven Following his studies, he took an apprenticeship at the Grip advertising agency, where he met Tom Thomson, Arthur Lismer, J. E. MacDonald…

History in Art

The history of Western Art shows us that history is, in fact, in our art. The major art movements reflect the basic ‘feeling’, the prevailing ideas and events, of our times. Art is, after all, inherently visceral in nature. So it’s not surprising that the art of the day can tell us ‘what’s going on’ underneath the surface. Briefly, here are some examples of how art periods have reflected major events in human history. Prehistoric…

10 Facts About Rembrandt

He was one of the leading painters of the Dutch Golden Age. He is considered, today, to be one of the greatest masters of all time. His paintings are notable for their inky blacks, and dramatic use of light and shadow. Here are a few interesting facts about Rembrandt. The Early Years 1. The Dutch painter, Rembrandt, was born in the city of Leiden in 1606. His full name was Rembrant Harmenszoon van Rijn. It…

Mary Pratt

Mary Pratt was a Canadian painter specializing in still life, realist paintings. Much of her work focused on domestic scenes. For example, she typically did incredibly realistic paintings of plates of food, jars of jams, and other ‘kitchen’ related scenes. Pratt painted items she saw around her, with astonishing realism. A jar of currant jelly glowed from within. The aluminum foil holding a meal of fish seemed to have eerie qualities. The flowers she picked outside…

How To Choose Wall-Art For Your Home

Art can really pull your home together. And it makes people feel warm and welcome. But how it’s presented can make a big difference. Oftentimes, art is be used to complement the decor of other furnishings in a room. Or, on the other hand, art might function as the main feature of a room. Color, size, and style are the factors that determine how a painting functions within the room space. 1. Start By Measuring…

Totem Poles

Vancouver has some of the most stunning and spectacular scenery of any city anywhere. I don’t think many would disagree with that assertion. But you may be surprised to learn this interesting fact. The First Nations totem poles in Stanley Park are Vancouver’s number one tourist attraction! Totem Poles are monumental structures made to be used for a variety of purposes. Typically carved from the trunks of Western Red Cedar trees, they are derived from…

6 Reasons To Support Local Artists

Below are six reasons why you can benefit by supporting your local artists. 1. Good For Local Economy By buying from local artists, you are stimulating the local economy, which, in turn, supports more of your own favorite local businesses. 2. Enjoyable Way To Invest The first rule of investing in a local artist is… buy what you love. Art can be one of the most enjoyable ways to invest. Above all, you get to…

The Marine Building

In The Beginning The Marine Building is one of Vancouver’s precious treasures. It makes a dramatic and exciting backdrop as you look west down Hastings. It is one of the world’s great art deco buildings. Construction started in the spring of 1929, with a lavish ceremony. The groundbreaking ceremony, reported in the newspaper that “His Worship Mayor W.H. Malkin blew a blast on a golden whistle and with it set in motion the steam shovel…

Mental Health and Art in Langley

Here’s an interesting story from the Aldergrove Star about a project that helps people with mental health issues through the use of art. In a project they’re calling the ‘Art Project Roadshow‘, Coast Mental Health (CMH) is sponsoring a program designed to enable their clients a chance to express themselves through public art exhibitions. From May through October of this year, 16 of their patients will be exhibiting their artwork at 12 different public venues…

Doris McCarthy – Canadian Landscape Artist

Canadian painter, Doris McCarthy was best known for her Canadian landscape paintings. Her paintings are noteworthy for their vitality, boldness and skillful explorations of hard-edged angles and forms. McCarthy’s work is now featured in many permanent collections, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, The Royal Collection at Windsor Castle, and the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. The Early Years After graduating with honors from the Ontario College of Art in 1930, she followed the…

Sam Siegel is getting noticed in the Vancouver Sun

Vancouver painter, Sam Siegel was recently spotlighted in the Vancouver Sun!  Be sure to check it out.  Maybe you don’t know about his amazing gallery, Sams Original Art? Well, here’s what people have said in Google Reviews… **** “An empty wall in my house is now a focal point and every time I pass by it, I stop to admire this amazing art piece.” – Mirabela M. ***** “I love the art, the price and…

Tattoo Artistry

Tattoos Gain Acceptance The tattoo is no longer quite the symbol of rebellion and subculture it once was. These days, one in five Americans has one. And that rate is considerably higher amongst millennials. Yes, in today’s culture, tattoos are quite popular. In fact, some tattoo artists, such as Nikko Hurtado, have close to a million Instagram followers. Meanwhile, the stigma around tattoos in the workplace is slowly fading in the business and corporate communities.…

Inspiring Canadian Artists – Part II

Bill Reid (1920-1998) Bill Reid, is one of Canada’s most revered and inspiring artists. Born in Victoria, BC, his father was an American, of Scottish/German heritage, and his mother was from the Raven/Wolf Clan of T’anuu, more simply known as Haida. Reid was an accomplished artist, sculptor, and jewelry maker. He is certainly Canada’s best known indigenous artists. In fact, some of his artwork can even be found on the Canadian $20 bill ( as…

Little-Known Facts About Canada

The Maple Leaf Flag Everyone is familiar with Canada’s red and white ‘maple leaf’. But Canada was already 100 years old before it got its flag! The National Flag of Canada was proclaimed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on January 28, 1965. It was raised on Parliament Hill for the first time a couple of weeks later, on February 15, 1965. Canadian Cultural Facts Surprisingly, the term ‘Eh’ is in the dictionary, and is…

Inspiring Canadian Painters – Part I

Emily Carr (1871-1945) Emily Carr, born in Vancouver, is Canada’s best known female painter. She spent her career painting themes related to the indigenous people of the Pacific Northwest. In 1898, Carr made her first of several trips to Ucluelet, to study the Nuu-chah-nulth people. In 1910 she travelled to Europe to learn the artistic trends of the period. She became a pioneering artist in Canada of the modernist and post-impressionist style. In later years, she…

PTSD and Art

What is PTSD? PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) is a psychiatric disorder resulting from a traumatic event. Terrifying experiences, such as war, abuse, or neglect, can leave traces that get stuck in our memories. When triggered, PTSD can causes symptoms such as re-experiencing the trauma, panic, or even memory lapses. Art therapy can be an important tool in addressing these types of issues. Common treatments for PTSD include talk therapy, or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).…

Capilano Suspension Bridge – a Vancouver Landmark

The Capilano Suspension Bridge, hanging 70 metres (230 feet) above the Capilano River, was first built in 1889. Over its 130 year lifespan, the bridge has attracted visitors from around the world. It has been the backdrop to a storied history, as well. In The Beginnings In 1888, Scottish civil engineer and land developer, George Grant Mackay, landed in Vancouver. He purchased 6,000 acres of forest on either side of the Capilano River, and built his…

Henry Matisse

Matisse – the Early Years Henri Matisse was born in northern France on New Year’s Eve, 1869. He never intended to become an artist, though. As a young man in Paris, he had studied law. After passing his bar exam with distinction, he took a job as a law clerk. A bout of ill health, however, changed the course of the artist’s life and career forever. While recovering from an appendicitis operation, his mother, Anna…

Art For Home Sales

Depersonalizing a home is a crucial step when it comes to preparing a house for sale. That because it makes it easier for prospective buyers to imagine how the house will look with their stuff. So most home stagers will ask the seller to take down family photos, kid’s artwork, and other nick-knacks strewn through any house. These items tend to distract the buyer from focusing on what’s important – like square footage and storage…

Pop Art – Art for the Masses

Pop Art can be called art ‘for the masses’. The artistic style known as ‘Pop-Art’ began in New York and London in the mid 1950’s. The term itself was coined by British art critic, Lawrence Alloway. It is a style characterized by the use of common, everyday imagery, and bold, vibrant colors. Common sources of Pop Art iconography included advertisements, consumer products, comic strips, and celebrity photos. As a style, its intent was to narrow…

Gastown….One of Vancouver’s Favorite Tourist Attractions

Jack Deighton, a Yorkshire seaman, steamboat captain, and barkeep, arrived in Vancouver in 1867, and opened the area’s first saloon. Known as ‘Gassy Jack’, Gastown, was named after him. Today, its one of Vancouver’s most popular tourist attractions. Even now, the district still retains its historic charm and independent spirit. And it has become a gathering place for stylish locals, and an attractive promenade for tourists to explore on foot. Located on the Burrard Inlet,…

Pablo Picasso – the Father of Cubist Art

Considered as the ‘father of Cubist art, most of the world knows him only as ‘Picasso,’ and His real name is a real tongue twister – Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Martyr Patricio Clito Ruíz y Picasso – a whopping 23 words! Picasso’s father, José Ruiz y Blasco, a painter and art teacher, was Picasso’s first major indluence. He began teaching his son…

What Makes Art Valuable?

What goes into making art valuable? Why is one work of art more valuable then another? Remember your piece needs to speak to you above all if you are going to hang it in your home. But if you are looking at art as an investment there are things to consider that make art valuable. Last year, a Jean-Michel Basquiat painting was sold at Sotheby’s for $110.5 million, making it the sixth most expensive artwork…

The Purpose of Art

Like language, art is a form of expression. Its message may be symbolic or religious, historical or political. But the purpose of art is not simply to communicate a message, but more importantly, to elicit an emotional response, to ‘move’ us, in some way. Art can be pleasing or astonishing, informative or perplexing, offensive or inspirational. Cave Paintings Art is a uniquely human product, the earliest examples of which are cave paintings, such as those…

A. Y. Jackson

The Group of Seven was, perhaps, the single most influential factor in the development of 20th Century Canadian art. A.Y. Jackson, was one of its founding members. A.Y. Jackson was born on October 3, 1882 in Montreal, Quebec. His father abandoned the family, so, at age twelve, Jackson went to work at a lithography company to help his mother feed the family. It was here that he acquired his interest in art, and began his…

Vancouver’s Interesting History

Vancouver has changed quite a bit from its early days as a lumber town. Vancouver’s history, from small-town sawmill community to a world-renowned destination, is quite interesting. April 6, 1886 – Vancouver Incorporated Vancouver was originally a small sawmill settlement called Granville. But in April of 1886, it was incorporated as the City of Vancouver, with a population of 1,000 residents. June 13, 1886 – Vancouver Burns Down However, when the new city of Vancouver…

Starry Night – Facts About Van Gogh’s Masterpiece

1. It is Van Gogh’s view from an asylum. After experiencing a mental breakdown in the winter of 1888, van Gogh checked himself into the Saint-Paul-de-Mausole asylum.  The view became the basis of  Starry Night.  Van Gogh wrote in one of his many letters to his brother Theo, “This morning I saw the country from my window a long time before sunrise, with nothing but the morning star, which looked very big.” 2. He left…

Art Camps

No matter what your interest, summer art camps offer something for everyone. They offer seminars and classes in all kinds of artistic activities, such as tie-dying, macramé, pottery, digital photography, dance, creative writing, drama, and more. Develop Confidence and Self-expression One of the biggest benefits is that they help kids to develop confidence and self-expression. That’s because, unlike regular summer camps, art camps are not meant to be competitive. Rather, kids are encouraged to be…

Art Can Change the World

Throughout history, art has influenced world cultures in profound ways, and has had a huge effect on society. For example, in recent history, artist have had a major impact on social issues, from the Berlin Wall to Tiananmen Square. Art really can change the world. 1. Leonardo Di Vinci, ‘The Mona Lisa’, 1503 There’s a reason why this painting is the most famous in the world. That’s because Di Vinci challenged how artists create portraiture,…

The Meaning of Colors

Colors have meaning. In fact, Color plays a very important role in our lives, affecting our moods and our emotions. For that reason, the colors an artist employs in their painting, aside from the actual subject matter, is of great significance. Throughout the ages, different cultures have shown a certain propensity or interpretation for certain colors. In the Western world, the colors of the traffic light say it all… red means stop, yellow means caution,…

Six Reasons to Support Local Artists

There are many reasons why purchasing artworks from a local artist is beneficial to a community. Supporting local artists can have a profound effect on a community, as well. 1. Increases Community Prosperity The money you spend on the local artist is given back to the community. By so doing, you help support all the other locals businesses. That includes galleries, restaurants, clothing stores, live music, and more. 2. Own Something Unique Local artist create…

E.J. Hughes and Vancouver Island

E.J. Hughes and Vancouver Island go hand in hand. Vancouver Island, on the West Coast of BC, is truly a beautiful place. And Canadian artist, E.J. Hughes, captured the beauty and charm of the island in his paintings. “One of the main reasons I paint is because I think Nature’s so wonderful that I want to try to get my feeling down about that on canvas if possible. I feel that when I am doing…

Italian Renaissance Art

The Italian Renaissance began in the 14th century in Italy, and lasted for more than 300 years. Renaissance is from the word Rinascimento, meaning ‘rebirth’. It represented a rebirth of Classical ideas in the pursuit of ‘true’ reality. The ‘Early Renaissance’ basically spans the 15th century. That’s when artists, such as Fra Angelico and Botticelli, began to experiment with realism. Following the Early Renaissance, the ‘High Renaissance’ lasted from about 1490 to 1527. That’s when…

The Art Periods

Medieval Art The millennium between 400 and 1400 A.D. is sometimes referred to as ‘The Dark Ages’. This period was relatively ‘dark’ in the art world, as well. Although much of the art of the period focused on religious imagery, a lot depicts rather grotesque, or otherwise brutal, scenes. As the millennium passed, more and more Christian and Catholic art appeared. The many elaborate and ornate churches built during this time needed artwork to adorn…

Coloring Books Are For Adults Too

Colouring books are no longer just for the kids. In fact, adult coloring books are all the rage right now. This trend is reflected in the sales of colored pencils and crayons, as well as coloring books. The first commercially successful adult coloring books were published in 2012. However, it is just beginning to take off in popularity. Art Therapy, Adult Colouring Books and Your Mental Health Art therapy is recognized as an important and…

Modern Art vs. Contemporary Art

Modern Art – Art For A New World Modern Art is the term used to describe artworks roughly dating from the mid 19th to the mid 20th century. It includes works from Manet and Van Gogh to Dali and Picasso. Artworks from this period are, arguably, the most popular and well-known works of art of all time. Prior to that, art was predominantly based on Classical or religious themes. Then, beginning with the Age of…

Rare Matisse May Break Record at Auction.

Heffel Fine Art Auction House hopes the auction of this Matisse masterpiece will boost interest in some of the Canadian art also available in the same auction. The piece, Henri Matisse’s ‘Femme assise sur un balcon’ (1919), will tour across Canada. And it’s expected to go for a whopping $3.8 million! “Canadian art really is undervalued internationally, and our star artists with their star pieces can stand on their own with the top artists in the…

Whistler’s Mother

In the spirit of Mother’s Day, here’s a look at the iconic ‘Whistler’s Mother’, perhaps the world’s most famous ‘motherhood’ painting. ‘Whistler’s Mother’ was painted by James Whistler in 1871. Born Anna McNeil in pre-Civil War North Carolina, she came from a cultured and well-to-do family. Her uncle was a rich plantation owner who created a scandal when he married a black woman. This led, upon his death, to a widely publicized legal battle. Family…

Art – Linking Tourism and Culture

Creating the ‘Feel’ of the Community Art is an important link between culture and tourism, and highlights what is unique about any community.  The artistic heritage and cultural life of a city work hand in hand to attract tourists. In Vancouver, for example, the native art of the Haida First Nations showcases the unique cultural heritage of Northern BC. The Importance of Government in the Arts It is crucial to recognize the important role that…

Mona Lisa – 10 Little -Known Facts

1. “Mona Lisa” Is Not Her Name Her name, Mona Lisa, means ‘My Lady Lisa’. But she is thought to actually be Lisa Gherardini, whose husband, Francesco del Giocondo, commissioned the work in 1503. This may explain the less prevalent title for the painting, La Gioconda. 2. Napoleon ‘Loved’ Her The French emperor once had Mona Lisa hanging in his bedroom in the Tuileries Palace for about four years. It’s said his fascination with the painting inspired his…

Painters Eleven

Painters Eleven was an influential artists’ group from Toronto in the 1950s. They were instrumental in helping to introduce abstract painting into the mainstream of Canadian art. Beginnings In 1950, Toronto was still dominated by the art of the Group of Seven. But in 1952,  Alexandra Luke organized the first public exhibition of abstract artists in Ontario. That exhibit included seven of the members of the future Painters Eleven group (Jack Bush, Oscar Cahén, Thomas…

Coloring Is Good For You

Have you ever heard of the ‘amygdala’? That’s the section of the brain that becomes activated whenever you feel stressed or scared. Of course, every child knows about the joy of coloring. Well, researchers have discovered that coloring is good for you, too! This activity actually has a positive effect on your state of mind, and helps to relax your amygdala. Five Benefits of Coloring 1. Relieves Stress Coloring activates the parts of the brain…

The Art of Tom Thomson

Tom Thomson‘s landscape oil paintings offer up an enduring image of the Ontario North. His art reflected and reinforced a developing Canadian nationalism. Although he was associated with the Group of Seven, he was not a member. Yet, he is still considered to be an iconic figure of the Canadian art world. The Early Years While living in Toronto, Thomson attended art classes at the Central Ontario School of Art and Design, and studied with…

Woodworking Art

Woodcarving is one of the oldest art forms. It has existed since Man first began using tools. In today’s world, it’s often incorporated in furniture design,  and in architecture, not to mention sculpture and printmaking. Wood is a very light material that can be easily cut, and allows for very fine detail.  It’s also much easier to sculpt than stone. Readily prevalent and versatile, wood has always been an attractive medium for artists to work…

The Art of Science

Many might think that art and science have little in common. On the contrary, artistic and scientific disciplines are often intertwined. For example, the architectural and design professions rely heavily on fundamental principles from both fields. And many inventors have had artistic training or influences. Here are some notable artist-scientists who have had a major influence on our world of today. Samuel Morse Morse studied art under the 18th century painter, Benjamin West, at London’s…

Is Literature ‘Art’

Art as Expression The Oxford dictionary defines Art as ‘the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power. Can we, then, consider literature to be Art? It certainly qualifies as an expression of creative skill and imagination. And a writer certainly uses his words to ‘suggest a narrative picture in his reader’s…

Interior Design and Art

Wall Art is the Color Palette Choosing the ‘right’ color can be one of the hardest decorating decisions you’ll have to make. It can be difficult to narrow down the possibilities into the colors that best fit your vision for the room. An easier approach might be, leave the paint chips behind, and focus on choosing some wall art instead. Once you find a painting or wall hanging that you absolutely love, you can use…

It’s All About eMotion

Pretty much everyone enjoys listening to music. Whether at home, in the car, or in a mall, music is a part of our lives, everywhere we go. Of course, music is an auditory medium. But it shares something in common with the ‘visual’ arts in one very important respect. The function of both is to create an emotional impact, one that doesn’t rely on any verbal description. That’s why the fine arts, whether music, painting,…

Lawren Harris – One of Canada’s Great Painters

Lawren Stewart Harris was born in Brantford, Ontario, in 1885. His family was wealthy, having developed a successful farm machinery business. In 1891 the family business merged with the Massey firm to create the  iconic Massey-Harris company. The young Lawren Harris was basically free of money worries for the rest of his life. The Early Years Harris took up  painting  at an early age and studied in Germany from 1904 to 1907. In 1911 he met J. E. H. MacDonald, whose  landscape…

Things To Do at Granville Island

There’s plenty to see and do here on the Island, whether you are looking for art, food, gifts, or just some fresh air and great scenery.  A Bread Affair Start your tour at Bread Affair, for some of the most scrumptious breads and baked goods you will ever taste.  They use only the freshest organic ingredients from local farmers, and best of all, everything is made by hand.  Shop the Market Vendors, farmers, and butchers…

Ukrainian Easter Eggs as Works of Art

Of course, Ukrainians do not have a monopoly on egg decorating. However, the decorated eggs from this region are highly collectible. Ukrainian Easter eggs are called pysanka, from the verb pysaty, meaning “to write”. Ancient examples of pysanka have not survived, due to the delicate nature of the eggshells. However ceramic “eggs” decorated with patterns and images have been found in burial sites and at archeological digs. The Symbolic Nature of Pysanka Pictures of nature, such as plants,…

Sam Siegel Paints Abstract Landscapes Inspired by the ‘Great Northwest’

Spring is here… Time to Explore! Abstract landscape artist, Sam Siegel, was born and raised in Vancouver. Sam says he likes to “re-imagine the spectacular vistas of the region to create my own abstract landscape vistas.” Certainly, many of his paintings display the undeniable appeal and magic of the ‘Great Northwest’. “Some of my most popular paintings, such as ‘Howe Sound’, ‘Burrard Inlet’, and ‘Road To Whistler’ are immediately recognizable to Vancouver locals and tourists…

Street Art Makes Me Happy

5 Reasons Street Art Makes Me Happy 1. Painted Streets = Colourful World = Happier Life  Street Art makes people happy. It makes their day more colorful, more fun, and more interesting. It adds character, diversion, and introspection to their daily routines. Art wakes people up, it enlivens and enriches their lives. It can be motivational, and even inspirational. And, perhaps most importantly, it can make people think about what’s really relevant. It uplifts the…

Cherry Blossoms in Vancouver

Springtime in Vancouver is a time to celebrate. That’s when the annual Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival celebrates the gorgeous arrival of Spring! Fragrant pink confetti floats down to cover our sidewalks, streets, and lawns. And cherry blossom petals coat the city with the scent of Spring. Where Did They Come From? In the early 1930’s, the mayors of Kobe and Yokohama presented the Vancouver Parks Board with 500 Japanese cherry trees. In 1958, the Japanese…

The value of art in your business

Did you know that art has a lot more scientifically-proven benefits on your health? The benefits of art in business are subtantial. More than making you feel happy or relaxed, themed artworks can do wonders for your mental health, disposition and well-being. In fact, many studies have shown that displaying art in your business contributes to lower stress levels. Art in Hotels Interior decorators understand the value of displaying paintings, sculptures and other artworks in…

Making Art

Making art is, of course, what artists do. They create their  artworks’ using a limitless variety of mediums and techniques. Some of the more common mediums include architecture, photography, sculpture, painting, and drawing. Not to mention films, musical compositions, literary works, dramatic performances. Art comes in every shape and form. And the techniques employed are limited only by the artist’s imagination. However, something all artists share in common is their insatiable appetite for observation and…

The Benefits of ‘Enjoying Nature’

In today’s world of powerful technology, people sometimes feel a need to simplify their lives, and get back to nature. In fact, studies show that enjoying nature can have huge benefits in all parts of our lives. There are so many ways you can take advantage of the benefits of nature. Here are just some of the benefits of enjoying nature… 1. Helps to relieve stress The demands of work or school can often be…

The ‘Art’ of Spring!

Spring has been a source of inspiration to all artists throughout the ages. And nothing says Spring like the vibrant beauty of flowers. With their vibrant colors, and incredible variety of intricate patternss, Nature has designed the ultimate attraction in flowers. Whether outdoors in gardens, or indoors in vases, flowers have always been one of the most popular subjects for artists everywhere, hobbyists and professionals alike. Here, we’ll take a look at 3 artists who…

Is Graffiti Really Art?

Graffiti is interesting. It’s creative and unrestricted. And it’s pretty much everywhere you look. In fact, every metropolitan area of the globe exhibits countless examples of graffiti, becoming more pervasive as populations expand. Perhaps that’s why, in recent years, graffiti has morphed from vandalism to ‘art’. Once considered to be nothing more than an unattractive defacement of private property, graffiti is often now seen as a popular form of ‘street art’. 5 Reasons Why Graffiti…

Public art and the value of making art available to all

Cities gain value through public art displays – social, cultural and economic value. It adds meaning to our cities and creates uniqueness. Public art is accessible for everyone, it provides a bridge between the past, present and future. How public art shapes a city People chose their homes, by how unique the city is. It is important what our towns look like. And it is important to have a certain community identity. This allows us…

Art is Life

Art is most commonly associated with pieces of work in a gallery or museum. However, there is so much more to art than what you see displayed in galleries. Without knowing it, we are surrounded by art. Most people don’t realize how much of a role art plays in our lives, and just how much we rely on art in all of its forms in our everyday lives. Art In the Home Chances are you…

Children and art, allowing them to just create.

Your preschooler is having a blast finger-painting with a mix of colours. Trying to be encouraging, you ask her, “What are you making?” and she shrugs. She hadn’t given it any thought. Little kids live for the moment — they love the way it feels when they smear paint on paper, how it looks when they sprinkle glitter, and even the soft sound a brush makes as it crosses the page, says Amy Yang, founder…

Emily Carr -legendary female Canadian artist

In the history of Canadian art, Emily Carr is an icon. Born in Victoria, she moved to San Francisco in 1890 to study art after the death of her parents. In 1899 she travelled to England to continue her studies. She spent time at the Westminster School of Art in London and various studio schools in Cornwall, Bushey, Hertfordshire, and elsewhere. In 1910, she spent a year studying art at the Académie Colarossi in Paris.…

Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci is thought of as a master in the art world. His depiction of the female form is especially noteworthy. Throughout his entire life, Leonardo da Vinci was passionately inspired by women. At least this is what his canvases tell us. This attraction has perhaps more to do with the way he chose to portray them. As the art critic Jonathan Jones explains in his article for The Guardian. We must remember that…

Welcome to my sketchbook.

Vancouver Artist Sam Siegel Hi, I'm Sam Siegel. Welcome to my 'sketchbook'. If you haven't seen my work, I am a Vancouver, BC artist. I paint abstract landscapes, and contemporary modern art. I also operate my own art gallery, 'Sam's Original Art'.  We're located at 1736 West 2nd Ave, near the city's famous 'Granville Island' marketplace. I started Sam's Original Art so I could make high-quality original art available to anyone. At our gallery, we…

Art as Investment

Did you know that art sales topped $60 billion in 2014, a 67% increase over 5 years? And, 75% of art collectors bought art for collecting purposes. So, is art collecting a valid investment strategy? The truth is, it depends. Collecting may not be right for everyone. And your knowledge about collecting, the art market, and investing all play a factor. Answering these seven questions will help you determine if art collecting is a smart…

Contemporary art

Strictly speaking, the term ” contemporary art” refers to art made by artists living today. Today’s artists work in a global environment that is culturally diverse, technologically advancing, and multifaceted. Working in a wide range of mediums, contemporary artists often reflect and comment on modern-day society. Viewers are encouraged to set aside questions such as, “Is a work of art good?” or “Is the work aesthetically pleasing?” Instead, whether art is “challenging” or “interesting.” Contemporary artists…

The Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver an artist’s mecca!

The Neighbourhood beginning . In the 1960s, beachside Kitsilano neighbourhood was Vancouver’s hippy hangout, drawing comparisons to San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury. Today the Kitsilano neighbourhood still has plenty of culture. But its apartments and houses are now occupied by young urban professionals and families. Many who enjoy a modern version of that relaxed atmosphere. It is also the birthplace of the global yoga brand, Lululemon Athletica. Just over the Burrard Bridge from the downtown peninsula, the…

5 Benefits of Arts and Culture

If you can count on one hand the number of times you’ve gone to a museum you’re missing out. The enriching world of culture is there to be enjoyed. The benefits are not as tangible as, say how exercising will help you drop 10 pounds, but the rewards are undeniable. The benefits of arts and culture are profound. Arts and culture Connects You To Humanity And The community You Live In By taking in a…

Using art to sell a home

There are many ways to use art to sell a home. Done right art can make a huge difference in the final selling price. But if you are going to use art to sell a home there are mistakes to avoid. 1.  Nothing too personal Remove any artwork that is too personal or offensive to buyers such as nudes, religious-or politically-themed pictures as well as anything else which might not be acceptable to the general…

The purpose of Art

The purpose of art can be varied. When new visual ideas are first introduced by the artist, they are often shocking. With time the best ideas are accepted.  Let’s look at some of the purposes of art. Likely the oldest purpose of art is as a vehicle for religious ritual. From the prehistoric cave paintings of France, to the Sistine Chapel, art has served religion. For centuries the Church was the primary patron of artists.…

Indigenous Art Across Canada

Art is an integral part of the preservation and expression of culture in Indigenous communities. And Canada is a treasure trove of Indigenous art. Spanning thousands of years has shaped the country’s cultural identity. Indigenous artists express of the people who have inhabited these lands for generations. In fact, it draws inspiration from their close relationship with the natural environment. When I do art I try and draw inspiration from the Vancouver area.  In the…

Vancouver Artist Sam Siegel and his gallery

I am proud to be a Vancouver artist and living in Vancouver is an artist paradise. You can see it in my work from the UBC Endowment Lands to Howe Sound. I’m a Vancouver artist who wanted first-class art to be accessible to everyone. I discovered not all Giclée prints were the same. After research and testing numerous different prints. I found many that faded, warped and loosened over time. To me this was not…

Art and doodling -the effects on your health.

It’s a bit of a stretch to describe the stick figures you doodled during that boring work meeting as“art”. But a pilot study suggests making any kind of art activates the brain’s reward pathways, even if it is terrible.  Suggesting art and doodling is beneficial to your health. Researchers from Drexel University recruited a mix of artists and non-artists. Then hooked them to headbands that measured blood flow through the brain. These 26 subjects then completed three art activities for three minutes each. Colouring in…

What is art therapy? And who can benefit?

What Is Art Therapy? Art therapy is also known as an expressive therapy. This sort of therapy uses art as a means of communication and lets people express and explore their thoughts and emotions. You do not even need to be very artistic or creatively talented to take part in this therapy. Art can be used in a number of ways from digital and photography to collages. Painting has also proven to be very helpful…

E.J. Hughes painting Fish Boats, Rivers Inlet sells for high of $2M at auction

Paintings by the late Vancouver Island artist should continue to rise. After Fish Boats, Rivers Inlet sold for $2 million at auction in Toronto. The E.J. Hughes painting Fishboats, Rivers Inlet sold for $2,041,250 and broke the previous record for the late British Columbia artist. But the 1946 painting didn’t bring the top price at the auction. That was $2,881,250 for Jean Paul Riopelle’s intense 1953 abstract Jouet. Both prices include a buyer’s premium on top of…

Our latest Draw for a Sam’s Giclee Canvas Print

For those of you that don’t know, you can drop off your business card at our art gallery for our future draws. Take home a  Sam’s Giclee print  of your own!  Congrats to Grant who can choose one of my Giclee canvas prints valued at $545 from my latest storm series.  They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but the superior quality of our products compared to our competitors is indisputable. We are…

Looking at the art of the impressionists

Impressionism is an art movement in France at the end of the 19th century. The Impressionists were a group known for their innovative painting techniques and approach to colour.   Impressionists and colour   They were excited by developments in colour theory.  They also abandoned the idea that the shadow of an object was made up from its colour with black added. And instead, they believed shadow is made of colour. For example, in an…

What is beauty in art?

What defines beauty in art? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. A popular quote from the 3rd century and true to anything you happen to be beholding. Literary genius, Shakespeare expressed this perfectly, in his play Loves Labours Lost of 1588 – Good Lord Boyet, my beauty, though but mean, Needs not the painted flourish of your praise: Beauty is bought by judgement of the eye, Not uttered by base sale of chapmen’s tongues When it comes to…

Art prodigy Advait Kolarkar at only 4yrs old.

Success at an early age When he’s not playing with dinosaurs or reading a book, art prodigy Advait Kolarkar uses paint, canvases and imagination to create internationally recognized abstract artwork. The preschooler is already selling his paintings for thousands of dollars and has had his art featured in three exhibits — a great example of how important it is for parents to encourage their children. Mother Shruti said in an interview Sunday that Advait first…

Meet Artist Elisabeth Anisimow

I was so lucky to have parents nurture my interest in art at a very young age. It is good to see another young lady being encouraged to be creative. Elisabeth Anisimow, Child Prodigy         Meet Artist Elisabeth Anisimow, an 11-year-old child prodigy who uses art to merge the real world and that of the imagination. Her dreamy works reinterpreting the masters of old but with a modern twist- Elisabeth’s masterpieces features…

Helping Mount Saint Joseph Hospital

We are so pleased to be donating Burrard Inlet to the Scotiabank Feast of Fortune Gala. Helping the Mount Saint Joseph Hospital is indeed an honour for us. The 2018 Gala raised almost $1 Million for the foundation! Saturday, January 26, 2019, at 5:30 pm is the 12th annual Scotiabank Feast of Fortune. An incredible celebration of Chinese New Year that combines amazing food creations and spectacular live entertainment. As well as a highly-anticipated live auction…

Using Art in Medicine: How medical schools are including art classes.

“What the heck does Impressionist art have to do with medical communication?” It’s a question that Dr. Michael Flanagan often gets after telling people about “Impressionism and the Art of Communication,”. The seminar he teaches to fourth-year medical students at the Penn State College of Medicine. In the course, students complete exercises inspired by 19th-century painters like Vincent van Gogh and Claude Monet. Ranging from observation and writing activities to painting in the style of the artist.  Medical schools and…

How helpful is art for home sales?

Depersonalizing a home is a crucial step when it comes to preparing a house for sale, so it’s no wonder most home stagers ask sellers to take down family photos, kid’s artwork and other odds and ends hanging up on the walls. For many buyers, these items can distract them from focusing on what’s important – like square footage or storage. But a blank wall can be just as detrimental, leaving a space feeling empty, boring…

Art Therapy and Autism

Art therapy promotes mental and emotional growth through art making. Art therapy’s goal is building life skills. As well as addressing deficits and problem behaviors, and promoting healthy self-expression. Clients are encouraged to explore and express themselves using art crafting attractive artwork is not the goal (though it may be a happy by-product). Art presents an Alternative to Verbal Communication Art therapy for Autism is a natural fit to help people express themselves . Verbal…

Vancouver buses become mobile examples of public art.

Your next trip on a public transit bus could have you feeling like you are inside a work of public art. Because of a partnership by a Translink and the Contemporary Art Gallery. More public art is coming to Vancouver.  In a very exciting and dynamic way. TransLink is adding pieces created by five Canadian artists on 30 buses beginning this month. This uniquely Vancouver event is good to see. The Artists. Each wrapped bus…

Investing in art Vancouver

Investing in art is a great way to boost your portfolio. Canada Revenue treats art in much the same way it treats other investments. In most cases, half of the gains on the sale of art are taxed just like any other capital gains, but there are further incentives for owners who donate their works to charity.    Investing in art for the first time can be an intimidating experience. Huntington T. Block, underwriter of Fine…

Granville Art

Check out this article from the Vancouver Courier about Granville art. New murals are almost complete in the pedestrian tunnel connecting Vancouver’s Granville Look Park. Unlike other murals around the city, those in the Granville Street tunnel will be repainted after a year. Each artist brings a different vision Irigoien’s mural is near the west entrance of the tunnel and has bright swirling colours to create the image of a person. He describes his mural…

What inspires you as a Vancouver Artist?

What inspires me as a Vancouver artist is the beauty of the area. I love to explore the natural beauty of the area. The beauty of Kitsilano, the mountains of Whistler, the glory of Howe Sound all inspire.  I bring that beauty to my work. The Blog Art Vancouver asked local artists what inspires you as Vancouver artist?  Dominique Bieger: “What inspires me? Well, an art critic in Milan recently stated, after looking at my art collection:…

Nature and art.

Often times in our busy lives, we seem to take some of the important things for granted. The complex beauty of nature has inspired many artists whether it is the array of colors in a sunset or the natural geometry of a pine cone. Some take the beauty and transpose it into an entirely new medium such as a canvas, wall or sculpture; however, some artists actually manipulate nature and turn it into art. This is…

Metamorphosis Vancouver Art Gallery

A current exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery takes its title from Franz Kafka’s novella about a man who wakes up to discover he’s turned into a giant insect. Rounding up 40 pieces from the gallery’s collection, the VAG’s The Metamorphosis is linked to Kafka’s famous 1915 story through the idea of change. “It’s a porous structure, from which we could pull these highlights from our permanent collection,” said co-curator Tarah Hogue. The exhibit is…

Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus

Francis P. Church’s editorial, “Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus” was an immediate sensation, and went on to become one of the most famous essays ever written. It first appeared in the The New York Sun in 1897, almost a hundred years ago, and was reprinted annually until 1949 when the paper went out of business. Thirty-six years after her letter was printed, Virginia O’Hanlon recalled the events that prompted her letter: “Quite naturally…

Vancouver Contemporary Art Galleries

For over a decade, Vancouver has been ranked as one of the most livable cities in the world. With a lively arts and culture scene. In recent years, Vancouver has become a cultural hub attracting major film production studios, earning the nickname ‘Hollywood North’. Vancouver has also developed a thriving public  Contemporary art scene with a programme that supports art-making in all its varieties. Needless to say, this has, in turn, created opportunities for a…

The Bill Reid Art Gallery in Vancouver

“Joy is a well-made object, equalled only by the joy of making it” Bill Reid (1920-1998) William Ronald Reid is a world-renowned Haida sculptor who has played a significant role in the revival of the cultural and artistic traditions of the Haida.  His mother was Haida from Skidegate, and his father was of Scottish and German origin.  Sophie Gladstone Reid. His father, William Ronald Reid, was born in Michigan of German and Scottish parents and was…

New light show synchronized to music wraps North Vancouver’s art gallery

The exterior facade of The Polygon Gallery at the Lonsdale waterfront in North Vancouver has undergone some changes. It now doubles as a new dynamic public art installation that uses light and sound. In a colourful display unlike any other in Vancouver. The show significantly improves the outside of the building. Having the effect of illuminating the whole place. Multi-coloured lights line the exterior the art museum as part of a new public art piece…

Eyes on the Street

As the stainless steel the sculpture shines in downtown Vancouver, and illuminates the area people take notice. The most significant component of the sculpture is 18 feet high, and the smaller one is 12 feet tall. Eyes on the Street They are positioned close to each other and inform each other, therefore influencing each other and mirroring each other. The artists were influenced by City Planner Jane Jacob who said, that “there must be eyes…

Kitsilano Wings

What was once a blank canvas on the side of building 1817 on West 4th Avenue, is now one of the city’s most beautiful murals. Kitsilano Wings Executive Director of the West 4th Avenue Business Association Jane McFadden, recognized a need for more artwork in the Kitsilano neighbourhood. So she approached artists Sandy and Steve Pell with an idea – to create a giant set of wings which would be an interactive public artwork. The…

Parker Street Studios

Like a time-lapse of ice splintering its way across a window pane, development continues to crawl to all corners of this city. Replacing the past with modern structures of cold steel and cold glass. It is why it is nothing short of a marvel that the creaky 100-year-old giant at 1000 Parker St. — a building that was once home to Restmore Manufacturing Co. That once made feather mattresses and iron beds and later, the…

Pacific Horses South mural on Granville Street

The Amazing Street Art of Vancouver Have you seen the amazing example of Granville Street art called Pacific Horses? It captures the history of the building and the area. It is also capturing the attention of the people in the area. Do not be afraid to see works of art all around you. The work of Ola Volo The mural is at the side of the William-Sonoma (2903 Granville Street) and Stable House Bistro (1520…

Word to Your Motherland

705 2nd St W, North Vancouver This unique 100ft work is a collective effort between street artists, North Shore Lookout shelter residents and local youth. The unique piece is called ‘Word to Your Motherland,” and encourages us to reconnect with our ancestry.  Word to Your Motherland is a large mural that has transformed a cement wall into a  showpiece to celebrate multiculturalism. It explores the importance of not only respecting our cultural roots but respecting others.…

Vincent Van Gogh the Dutch master

Vincent van Gogh (March 30, 1853 – July 29, 1890) was born on 30 March 1853 in Zundert, a village in the southern province of North Brabant. He was the eldest son of the Reverend Theodorus van Gogh (1822 – 1885) and Anna Cornelia Carbentus (1819 – 1907). Brother to  Elisabeth, Anna,  Wil,  Theo and Cor. Little is known about Vincent’s early years other than that he was a quiet child with no apparent artistic…

Christmas and Art

Christmas and art go together. From the Renaissance and the Catholic Church to the modern day.  Art has a way of showing history in amazing ways. The art of the Catholic church has a rich history. As evident by these examples. Botticelli The Annunciation (1489) The illiteracy of pre-Renaissance and Renaissance times led the Catholic Church and wealthy merchants to commission painters. To tell the story of the origins of Christianity in pictures. They were…

Art in everyday life.

Finding art in the everyday There was a great article in the Delta Optimist recently about seeing art in everyday life. I agree with. The ability to see art in the world around you is a beautiful thing. Can you see beauty in the sunset? In the rising tides? What about the dance of a child? To see art is to see beauty in what others see as dull.  Art in the Vancouver landscape I…

Art and Productivity

Art in an office setting can have a significant impact on not only productivity but morale and reduced sick days. Says The Guardian. At Sam’s original art we have lots of pieces to fit any office space and create the right environment for your customers and your employees. Art in the office Contrary to what your boss might say, being distracted at work is not always a bad thing. If the object of your distraction…

Art and society

Art and society have always gone together. Art in some form or another has existed in our community as long as man. It is a part of our daily lives and is present in cultures across the world. Most people have an appreciation for art. They enjoy observing it or creating it; they may even support it financially or by volunteering. Art is integral in our culture because it provides us with a deeper understanding…

How to hang a painting

Simple calculations are the most foolproof way to determine the size of the artwork you’ll need. How to hang a painting on a wall is easy, so follow the steps below. Most people hang their paintings way to high, making your room look small and less inviting. If your hanging your painting over a couch, have the bottom of the painting be 8″-10″ off the top, and 15″-20″ for a desk. Simple! GIVE IT ROOM…

Art as a stress release

“Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life.” — Pablo Picasso We are all born with an innate desire to express ourselves, and art encompasses a broader range of activities than you might imagine. HOW CREATING ART RELIEVES STRESS Activities like painting, sculpting, drawing, and photography are relaxing and rewarding hobbies that can lower your stress level and leave you feeling mentally clear and calm. Creating art provides a distraction, giving your brain…

Color Psychology and its use in art and your mood.

The colour that attracts you can say a lot about your mood and personality. Each colour is associated with a different emotion. It has also come to symbolize different things.  I use that colour and emotion in all my paintings. Colours can have different meanings and effects on your mood. When you see a colour what does it mean to you? Red Red is the colour of strength and power.  As well as passion, desire,…

Seniors and art therapy

There is power in art. It is everywhere around us providing a sense of well-being and enjoyment, including for seniors. It does not matter if a senior lives with chronic pain, has memory issues, or is just a bit depressed due to inactivity. There are multiple benefits of art therapy for seniors. KINDS OF ART THERAPY Choose from painting, drawing, sketching, music, dancing, knitting, weaving, and creating collages. There are endless possibilities to engage a…

Art in Vancouver

Art in Vancouver is all around us, and not all of it is in galleries, there is some, of course, found just in nature and some of the art in Vancouver is on buildings for all to see. 11 Word to Your Motherland 705 2nd St W, North Vancouver Artists: Nisha K. Sembi, Miguel “Bounce” Perez, Take5, and Corey Bulpitt This sprawling 100-foot work of art is a collective effort between street artists, North Shore…

How Finland uses art and creativity to help kids.

Art and a sense of self ( creativity to help kids ) Art can go a long way to developing a child’s sense of self, and feeling of confidence. While many schools are cutting back on art in school, Finland is doing more, an example England hopes to copy. Clinical psychologist Katherine Taylor looks at how Greater Manchester is putting the arts at the heart of its mental health strategy. Inspired by Finland’s positive experiences.…

Greer’s Beach becomes known as Kitsilano

Greer’s Beach was a favorite camping spot in early Vancouver. The name angered the Canadian Pacific Railway who had been given the beach in 1885 as part of a 6,000-acre land grant. The problem was the beach was named for Sam Greer. He claimed he had purchased the beach and 200 acres of land off. Aboriginals in 1884. Greer fought the C.P.R. for decades over his claim, and consequently, in 1891 he was jailed for…

Richard Brodeur -Canuck hockey legend turns his passion to painting.

R Richard Brodeur is North Vancouver Artist. Richard is a former NHL Goalie who played for the Vancouver Canucks. He earned his spot in Canucks lore in 1982, when he backstopped the team to its first Stanley Cup final performance and was given the moniker King Richard. The native from Longueuil, Quebec retired from hockey in 1987. According to Vancouver hockey fans, Brodeur is one of the top ten Canucks in the club 40 years…

Group of Seven – icons in Canadian art

Tom Thomson and the painters known as The Group of Seven went into the wilds as voyageurs, carrying their canvas and paints, to discover and reveal their own ideas for Canadian art. They met while working as commercial artists at various Toronto printing firms. They specialized in graphic design for advertisements. On weekends taking trips together, painting scenes around the city and discussing art. In the summer of 1912, after visiting Huntsville and Muskoka, Ontario…

Art Lesson

The website mental floss recently wrote a great article about the answer to the question “What is art?” given by famous politicians, philosophers, authors and more. And the responses varied a great deal. The truth is art is anything you make it. It is all this and more. Follow me blow for a quick art lesson. Art is… …according to a dictionary: 1. [from the 1300s] Skill; its display, application, or expression… [from the 1600s]…

E.J. Hughes finding inspiration in British Columbia

One of my biggest art inspirations has always been E.J. Hughes so I was delighted to find the article below from Alan Twigg about a man I so admire. “B.C. is the best place in the world for landscape subject matter.” — E.J. Hughes “One of the main reasons I paint is because I think nature’s so wonderful that I want to try to get my feeling down about that on canvas, if possible. I…

Point Grey Art Gallery

Thank you Point Grey Living Magazine for such a great article. If your looking for an art gallery in point grey, come visit our show room! I was so lucky at an early age to have a teacher recognize my passion for art and parents that nurture it to this day. My parents took me to art galleries and museums. That helped me develop my love of art. Going to Lord Byng High School, a…

Art in school

Art is amazing, and I am so lucky to make a living from my passion. It has not only given me a way of seeing Vancouver but more importantly of understanding myself. I would like to see more art in school. But what effect is the sidelining of art having on our children’s education? Benefits come both from practicing the art and from learning about it. It is felt that not teaching art in school…

Vancouver Art & Life with Sam Siegel

“Thank you Boston Voyager Magazine for this article about me and giving me a chance to talk about my love of Vancouver. I love the beauty of the area and getting a chance to share it!” Sam,  tell us about yourself and your journey so far. I was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia. From an early age, , I enjoyed colouring and drawing. My 3rd-grade teacher noticed how interested I was in art,…

Sam’s Original Art and the Ronald McDonald House Charity

How can you not be in awe of the fantastic charity work of Ronald McDonald House Children’s Charity? As they put it so well on their website. “Ronald McDonald House BC and Yukon care for families of children whose health needs take them far from home and keeps families together in a home away from home. Providing comfort, compassion, and a sense of community when they need it most.” When we got the chance to…

Home Staging and Art for Real Estate Agents

It is well known that staging can make a huge difference in the price of a home when it comes time to sell.   The right artwork is vital to staging correctly.  Art that is too big can make a room seem crowded, too religious or political and it can turn people off. When you stage a home the idea is to make the possible buyer feel at home, like they can picture themselves there. Landscapes tend…

How much should you pay for original art?

Art can last a lifetime, or longer. Indeed, what is considered to be the ‘best’ art may often be cherished and enjoyed by many generations. Art by ‘the Masters’ is, of course, invaluable, and extremely costly. But what about the ‘art of the day’. The kind of art we might typically buy to decorate our condos, homes, and offices? Certainly, people have a need for affordable original art. Whose purpose is expressly to enhance the…

What’s The Use Of Art? – Part 5

What is Art – Part V… Art is, not surprisingly, deeply tied to historical and social events. No wonder then, that the ‘goal-posts’ for the definition of art are, like the seasons, ever-changing. But, as is often said, the more things change, the more they stay the same. There are always, of course, grey areas of contention about what art ‘is’. However, we can generally agree that any definition will always include at least two…

What’s The Use Of Art? – Part 4

Whats the use of art – Part IV… The 20th century, then, spawned a number of artistic ‘movements’, Cubism, Expressionism, Surrealism, Art Deco, etc., heralding a monumental change in the perception of what ‘art’ should be about. And, of course, each generation continues to add to, manipulate, and redefine the definition of art (by ‘art’, I mean ‘fine arts’… art that is created as image, simply to be contemplated, rather than be ‘useful’. Any artistic…

What’s The Use Of Art? – Part 3

What is Art – Part III…   The 20th century heralded in what is generally known as the ‘Modern Age’. This change was, of course, reflected in all aspect’s of society. And indeed, with the invention of the telegraph, the electric light bulb, the telephone, the automobile, motion pictures, and airplanes, the world suddenly became, in the blink of an eye, a much smaller, and fast-moving environment. The Industrial Revolution was all about how to…

What’s The Use Of Art? – Part 2

What is Art? – Part II… In Part I, considering the question, ‘How do we determine what makes art valuable?’, I suggested that we go ‘back in time’ a bit, and examine the question from a historical perspective. In fact, prior to the 17th century, there was really no distinction between arts and ‘crafts’, nor any perceived difference between an artist or an ‘artisan’ (ie., ‘craftsman’). As it was then, what we now think of…

Discover Art

Discover Art – Part I… Have you ever considered the subject of art? I mean, what is art, anyway? Certainly, there is good and bad art. But then, who decides which is which? Honestly, often times, when visiting a gallery or museum, I really just don’t ‘get it’. Are they trying to pull one over on me, am I missing something? And even then again… who, or what, determines its value? After all, some folks…