It is the start of the spring/summer season at The Gallery on Main and to kick things off the annual Spring Gala was held at the Gallery this past weekend.
Laverne Jones, owner of The Gallery on Main, said her spring and fall galas mark the beginning and ends of the seasons where her artists switch out their works. Jones said she can receive between 200 and 300 new paintings at these events.
This Gala also marked Jones’ fifth year of running The Gallery on Main and the beginning of her sixth.
She said she took over ownership of the place from friends of hers when she wanted to semi-retire.
The weekend included receptions, meet and greet with the artists, demos and of course, the showing and selling of art.
Original art, to be exact.
The Gallery on Main features upwards of 600 pieces from between 70 – 90 artists at any given time, said Jones. Ninety-five per cent of that art is original, she added.
“There isn’t anything else like it,” said Jones. “You won’t go into your neighbour’s house and find the same print hanging on the wall.”
There is also quite a bit of variety in that art, said Jones. From realism to abstract, all styles of art can be found at The Gallery on Main and Jones strives to remain true to her slogan, ‘Art for everyone.’
“There is every kind of style imaginable,” said Jones. “It is art for everyone. People can find what they want up here.”
That variety recently earned The Gallery on Main a feature in Arabella as one of four must-see galleries in Alberta. Jones said the Gallery was chosen for its variety, uniqueness and location.
Jones not only runs a gallery that displays art, she dabbles in creating art as well. She said she has tried her hand at painting with water colours and acrylics and carving with soapstone and wood.
There are even a few of Jones’ pieces on display in the Gallery, but Jones said she does not consider herself a true artist when she is surrounded by such high-calibre art.
“I play,” said Jones with a laugh. “I love to paint, I love to carve but I kind of just consider that I play.”
Vivian Bennett, an artist who has been displaying her paintings at The Gallery on Main since 2006, said the gala offers her an opportunity to connect with the artist community, which she said is often very isolated.
“Laverne makes it a very comfortable and warm place to show my work,” said Bennett. She added that another reason she displays her work at The Gallery on Main is because it is a good space with good lighting that makes Bennett’s work look even better.
As a Central Alberta artist, whose paintings tell stories of Central Alberta, Bennett also said it makes sense to display her art in a Central Alberta gallery.
Bennett also got the chance to thank Jones for her support by doing a portrait painting demonstration as part of the gala.
“I think it is important because you can’t just take from a gallery,” said Bennett. “You have to do your duty, you have to give back, you have to be a part of the community.”