Thursday, 29 December 2011

John Althouse
Photojournalist and freelance photographer for nearly twenty years, John Althouse began his professional career at The Daily News in Jacksonville, NC, where he is the chief photographer. His work appears in numerous local, regional, national and international newspapers and magazines. Born and raised in southeastern Pennsylvania, John grew up experiencing both the urban and rural world where he developed an appreciation for composition in nature and a discerning eye to anticipate and capture life's fleeting moments. A retired Marine and outdoor enthusiast, John resides in Jacksonville, NC.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011


Grounded in impressionistic tradition, with a contemporary style all her own, Robin Cheer's paintings document scenes familiar to all of us. Her settings include relaxed interiors, bustling cafes or sunny beaches, but the primary focus is on the human element.

Robin is an avid sketcher and skilled at depicting the figure. She brings gestural drawing elements into her paintings. Her style is immediate, expressive and painterly with a strong emphasis on composition.

Always artistic, Robin's formal training was with mentor Elizabeth Locke in her hometown of Austin,Texas. With Elizabeth, Robin studied traditional masters techniques of drawing and painting. Robin is an artist member of the American Impressionist Society and Plein Air Austin, of which she is a founding member.

Monday, 26 December 2011

End of the Season SALE

Another sucessful year has past. We are wrapping things up over here at the Pop Up Shop and you may want to take advantage of this sale if your in the neighborhood we have a lot of beautiful things left that need homes.

End of the season SALE

Saturday, 24 December 2011

11x14 "A Nesting Place"

A resident of Beaufort, Mary grew up in Monroe, NC and graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh, NC with a bachelor’s degree in art.  

Known for her paintings and histories of Beaufort, over the past few years, Warshaw has compiled an extensive online Swansboro, NC History. The site includes many articles, information from the town's nomination to the National Register and cemetaries, as well as histories and images of its historic homes.  
W.E. Mattocks House
Waiting for Ferry
More recently, Warshaw has painted some of Swansboro's historic homes. PRINTS and note cards (with brief histories) of these homes are available at Tidewater Gallery.


Friday, 23 December 2011

Happy Holidays from the GPAG

Season's Greetings from the Grimsby Public Art Gallery!

We hope you have happy and safe Holidays and we look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

The GPAG will be closed December 24th-27th & January 1st and 2nd. We look forward to seeing you in the New Year!

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Festive season

'Abject Object' is in it's last days at Hand Held with it's last day being tomorrow (although you will still be able to peer through the window at it over the Christmas holidays).

Don't forget to pop in and pick up something unusual for Christmas - for yourself or as a gift.

We will re-open regular times from the 17th of January with Sarah Eve Deaman's 'Truth to the Tales'.

Thanks for all of your support this year and have a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Sharing the Legacy

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012, 2 – 4 p.m.

Many visitors to our current show, A Surgeon’s Hand, an Artist’s Heart have been moved to tell us stories of their own turned wood treasures made by featured artist, Sandy Graham. We know that there are many more works – and stories to go with them – in our community and we would like to invite community members to bring their treasured Sandy Graham pieces into the gallery for a special afternoon of sharing those stories. If you are interested in bringing in a work please contact the art gallery at 905-945-3246 or email ; even if you don’t own a work please come to enjoy the works shared by others and to learn a little more about this marvellously generous and talented individual. Admission is free, refreshments will be served.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Thanks to everyone who come out to "Paranormal Hallucinations" The opening was crazy fun and the crowd was awesome!!

you can check out our inventory HERE

Othelo Gervacio "Bad news 2"

Egyptian Jason "Horror Business"

Charlie Marks (RIP)

Swampy "Hourglass"

Upcoming NFB Film Nights

Wednesday January 4, 2012 @ 2pm (for KIDS)

Noel, Noel – Animation (22 mins 30 s)
A misguided billionaire falls in love with Beatrice, a bespectacled fairy. Noel, Noel is a Christmas fantasy, reminding us that happiness comes when the heart is allowed to speak.

Lights for Gita – Animation (7 mins 34 s)
Eight-year-old Gita can’t wait to celebrate Divali. The Hindu festival of lights in her new Canadian home. She discovers that Canada is nothing like her earlier home in New Dehli and worries the celebration is impossible. As Gita experiences the glittering beauty of the icy streets, the traditional festival of lights comes alive in a sparkling new way.

Friday January 20th, 2012 at 11am (for KIDS)
Sunday – Animation (9 min 50 s)

Battling his Sunday afternoon boredom, a young boy places a coin on the train tracks and soon witnesses a remarkable transformation.

Oma’s Quilt – Animation (12 min 52 s)

A film about love, life and change. Oma is moving to a senior’s residence where she doesn’t know anyone. Her granddaughter Emily tries to ease the burden of such a momentous change.

Painted Tales: In Winter Still – Animation (10 min 10 s)

When Monet’s selfish gardener bans children from the gardens at Giverny, spring refuses to come. Without his garden and young visitors, Monet loses his desire to paint. Inspired by one of Oscar Wilde’s classic fairy tales.

The Dingles – Animation (7 min 47 s)

Doris Dingle fights a ferocious windstorm to save the lives of her three beloved cats in a charming adventure story.

Thursday February 23rd, 2012 at 7pm
A Cloud’s Dream – Hothouse 7 (1 min 25 s)                

One cloud’s imagination soars in a captivating journey from dusk ’till dawn in this stereoscopic particle simulation.

Mighty Jerome – Documentary (83 min 38 s)  

 Marking African Heritage Month (February 2012)
A film about the rise, fall and redemption of Harry Jerome, one of Canada’s greatest athletes. Gorgeous imagery, impassioned interviews and archival footage tell the story of what has been called “the greatest comeback in track and field history.”

These films will continue to be shown at the Grimsby Public Art Gallery as part of a collaborative programme between the GPAG and the Grimsby Public Library

Friday, 16 December 2011

Stephen Greer
I express myself drawing and painting. Depicting the North Carolina coast and doing candid sketches of people in public places provide the visual references used in creating abstract and realistic work. Patterns, colors, rhythms and their astounding abundance in the world fascinate me. Carrying a sketch book makes it possible to take advantage of these fleeting elements. Life and art engage me fully in the evolution of growing and learning. - Stephen Greer  

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Eileen Williams - Fiber Art
A resident of the Crystal Coast of North Carolina, Eileen started as a traditional quilter but quickly began exploring the world of fiber art, thus creating her truly unique pieces. Inspired by the beauty in nature, her fiber art often reflects images captured in her photographs and from her imagination. Eileen has won numerous awards.

Be sure to check out Eileen's photography at Tidewater Gallery. Her photographs capture the magical beauty of the natural environment so prevalent in Swansboro and Emerald Isle. They evoke the mood and spirit of coastal Carolina.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Cogeco TV Interview

In case you missed it, here is Cogeco TV's interview with our director Rhona Wenger for A Surgeon's Hand, An Artist's Heart:

The exhibition is on display until january 29th, 2012. Book your tour today!
Margot Dizney Loy - Watercolors

Margot was born at Camp Lejeune, N.C. Her early years were spent living near various military duty stations with her family and Marine father. She began painting and drawing as a very young child and continued taking art classes through high school and while working on a double major in psychology and sociology in college
Although for many years clay sculpture has been her predominant medium Margot also continues to work in watercolor and  OILS. Margot usually begins a work with the idea of evoking or communicating an emotive state or a concept. Many of her paintings begin with dream imagery. Margot presently lives in North Carolina and divides her time between the mountains and the coastal region our state.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Paris Alexander
Paris Alexander wanted to be a sculptor from an early age, however, his life's path would follow a circuitous route. For several years after college the New York City native pursued a career as a research specialist in the cancer center at Duke University. All the while, his passion for art continued as he kept a carving studio in Durham.

After ten years Alexander had reached a glass ceiling in the research business. It was then that his thoughts refocused on becoming a full time sculptor. Deciding to quite his research job he would use his savings to keep him going for a few years until his sculpture career was established. Contrary to what he thought, his savings were gone within a few months, so it was necessary for Alexander to work at odd jobs to keep going. He even made custom carved stone mantles and other pieces for expensive homes.

Today, as more and more people become familiar his work Paris Alexander is able to produce pieces of his own choosing in addition to doing custom commissioned works. Collectors find him - rather than the other way around. His sculptures now adorn public and private spaces around the state of North Carolina and the U.S.  MORE. . .

Monday, 12 December 2011

No Tax Tuesdays!

For the month of December, all customers save the 13% HST on their Gallery Shop purchases on Tuesdays December 6, 13 & 20!

Please note that Gallery members will not receive their usual 10% discount in addition to the 13% on these 3 sale days.  Items may not be put on hold for the sale.  Thank you

A Surgeon's Hand, An Artist's Heart

Thank you to all who came out on Sunday December 11th to celebrate the life and work of Sandy Graham. The reception was exceptionally well-attended which is a testament to this late artist's talent and his positive rapport with our community.

Please follow this link for a feature in the Grimsby Lincoln News:'s%20on/article/1258660--vet-s-passion-on-exhibit

Here are some images of the exhibition opening:

For those interested in knowing more about Sandy Graham, his son was kind enough to provide us with a touching and informative write-up on his father. Please read after the page break:

A letter to Rhona Wenger and Mary Rashleigh from John Graham, December 2011 to accompany the exhibition:
A Surgeon’s Hands, An Artist’s Heart: Works in Wood by Sandy Graham
December 9, 2011 – January 29, 2012 at the Grimsby Public Art Gallery

Hi, Rhona and Mary:
Since you ‘only know what you know’ about Dad, I’m happy to share a few things. Although the question in your note was very open, I’m certain you want to know more in relation to his love of wood and woodworking.

This might read like some publicist copy—while my familial bias is obvious, I confess Sandy is among my favorite men. These are mostly observations while other parts are gleaned from my recollection of many conversations.  I was privileged to be close to him during this part of his working life. As an adult, I was able to watch him master aspects of woodcraft and push it into the realm of personal expression. Visits home always started with looking at current work and the resulting discussions would never really stop. Sandy had a preference for questions and criticism rather than simple praise. He would always reserve his opinion until I shared mine. So whether challenging or complimentary, our conversations were fun. Incidentally, his self-criticism was always reason enough for change in technique or aesthetic choices.

Many folks know some basics of Sandy’s biography—he was a veterinarian surgeon, he founded Grimsby Animal Hospital and was a skilled sailor—but not so much about what informed his woodworking. He related all of his occupational interests to early experiences growing up on his family’s farm (animals and crops) near Wellington in Prince Edward County, Ontario. His childhood spanned the depression and the Second World War when making things was an everyday necessity; it was something he watched everyone around him doing, and it was something he himself had to do. (Have you ever read John Kenneth Galbraith’s, The Scotch, about the character and lives of Scottish settlers and their descendents in Ontario? Those were my father’s people.) 

His general interest in artisans, materials and making things started in this time and lasted his entire life. He always had preference, and an almost instant affection, for people who made things. Marjorie, my Grandmother, who supplemented their farm income as a schoolteacher, encouraged Sandy toward book learning; he was willing and good at it. Dad was always restless in meeting his responsibilities so he could then get to what he really loved doing. He remained so through his career as a veterinarian, always with an eye toward learning more and traveling, as well as making things. Like many craft occupations woodturning attracts a more then a few retired professionals, so Dad’s background was not unusual among practitioners. Still, none of these biographical elements really explain how he was able to produce desirable objects that earned peer recognition.

Both my parents shared a life-long enjoyment of craftwork, landscape, art and architecture; travels with them always included lots of looking, lots of analyzing. Technical questions fascinated him, yet he would never fetish an object and was always curious over matters of production and to know something about the makers, their lives and working methods. Sandy came of age with the emergence of mid-century modernism and not surprisingly he was attracted to and curious about what was new and made in his time, as much as he was with everything that came before it. His appreciation of design was established in the late 1940s when he spent time in Montreal to work his way through university with the ROTC. He always recalled his experiences in the city as formative and everything he took in at the time—jazz, design and visual art—became lifelong interests. As long as I can remember, he had a critical eye on materials, proportion and scale. He started planning Grimsby Animal Hospital about ten years after his Montreal experiences, around 1959. He was proud of the building (1961) that was designed and built by Ross Hall and Noel Ogilvy, and he would reference its form as appropriate and elegant.

Dad never shared any particular childhood experience that explains his interest in aesthetics, but I’m pretty sure he was a whiz in geometry.  When I was a teen he gave me an unforgettable lesson on the golden ratio—pieces of wood and an outline of a doghouse were involved. He recalled his experience learning this concept as a boy, and took care to help me understand how it factored into the appearance of many things, and whether something seemed “right or not.” Thinking about this as an adult, I realized Sandy had long been influenced by the idea of a formula for proportion.

My math tutorial, by the way, was conducted in our barn near his assorted wood piles—collections that included broken bits, milled wood, scrap, reclaimed furniture, odd sticks and tree pieces, some from Dad’s own childhood, carried from the family farm. Entropy was common in the stacks and tending to those piles was a regular chore—a task that was never popular with my older siblings or me, although they knew the stories about pieces of wood too, having had a much longer history moving them about with Dad. Similar piles were made wherever he went, my mother, Joan, did a noble job keeping them under control or hidden. He also collected wood while living and working in north Africa and through extensive travels elsewhere, including pieces he would ‘fish’ while sailing. I suppose an argument could be made that most of the exotic wood he gathered and used had a kind of local component for him.

So when Sandy started this professional training, around age 62, he came to it with a highly developed eye over form and detail in design, an odd collection of raw materials, and a longstanding desire to return to his earliest vocational interests. When he started around 1988, he worked full time in the basement of his 1400 square ft retirement home. The shop was in a room with no windows and no ventilation. We had regular debates about the Dickensonian conditions of his workroom. Mom put up with it for a short while before insisting he build a proper workshop. As much as housing his production, it was also a new spot to contain the piles.

Dad’s ability to know wood owed something to his training in anatomy in the sense he was used to seeing what was obscured by surface. Cutting and dimensioning raw logs and tree pieces was mostly a deliberate thing with him. And not surprising for a man who understood the ‘science of form’ his deliberateness extended into detailed drawings for many pieces. Visualizing work was a complex activity: sometimes the wood itself would determine the appearance of a finished piece, in other instances pieces emerged through plans and detailed drawings. This was particularly true of his segmented work. From planning to completion, many pieces would take two to four years to finish. To me, because of his early proficiency, it seemed like he had an innate ability to reveal grain patterns and movement.

But turning wasn’t an inborn skill—his ability came from serious rigor and discipline, and it was mostly self-taught. Dad took up repetitions and would practice, then practice more. In the days when he was allowed to have a woodstove in his shop, no one knew too much about what he considered failures. Work always began around eight in the morning with breaks for tea and lunch. After a short rest, he would continue through to late afternoon. Saturdays too. This working pattern was basically what he did through his entire career. Even when he started to extensively care for Joan, he never let up. His output was even more extraordinary when you consider he only dedicated 7 months a year to production during his nearly twenty years of woodturning. Although, while spending winters in the American southwest, he would carve extensively and attend workshops as well as plan and draw. Perhaps his most prolific year was his last in 2008.

In that year, particularly with his segmented Aurora vessels, he was more satisfied than ever with the quality of his work. This segmented series was among his most personally expressive and fulfilled a number of long-standing ideas for original work. Sandy was basically shy in talking about his craftwork and his preoccupations, particularly when he didn’t know his thoughts entirely or was uncertain about something.  Such was his bearing in mulling metaphysical and physical phenomena; the same with existential questions. No surprise these things come up when you live on a 12-metre boat and travel through seas and across an ocean, especially during night watches or when conditions get rough. There’s a more everyday connection here too: after he finished training in celestial navigation sometime in the mid 1970s, he took up a reading interest in space and physics. While he sought explanations for auroral events, his fascination and connection to them was clearly linked to his very being—they were imagined as a kind of transit point or interface with things beyond, something, perhaps, we would “go into, or are already part of, who knows.”  His meditations on the Aurora Borealis resulted in a kinetic sculpture, a departure for Sandy; it was something he struggled with for years before finishing in the days before he died in December 2008.

I must mention Sandy’s hands. As with most surgeons, he had good control and could be quite graceful. The thing about his hands was not about actual production, but tactile assessment, a necessary part of his planning, reviewing and critiquing.  It may seem odd, but he spent a lot of time mindfully holding raw materials, tools or finished objects—I can only guess at the number of different ways he perceived and understood them. It was always fascinating for me to observe him engaged in this way, and if you lived with him, you knew this form of study was a reflex like breathing. Like high achieving artists and artisans we know, he never ever stopped looking or thinking about things made or to be made.  Holding stuff was an elemental way to stay connected to work.

Tools. Dad loved them, particularly sharp ones. We used to joke that he took up woodworking because of his surgeon’s attachment to precision and sharp steel. He enjoyed tools in both a practical and aesthetic way. Like many turners, he made most of the handles for his own turning tools, all the better to control outcomes. As sharpness was an absolute requirement for him, Sandy’s honing was terrific (he could have been a professional) and was a skill he never stopped working to improve.

I’m probably getting into stuff you know when I mention that he was a happy colleague. But he really did relish information sharing, his extensive social network and interactions over all his occupational pursuits. No relationship, however, was as vital to Dad’s output as the one he had with my mother. As with all his successes, Joan’s encouragement, participation and critical perspective was vital; she made him confident. In return, he never stopped pleasing her by making beautiful objects or generating fun controversy with others she didn’t like.  Sandy smartly organized his life so he could make things and be free from worry over practical matters like having to sell work to pay bills. This suited them, and while Dad enjoyed recognition from colleagues and the encouragement of friends and patrons, I always thought that he had a market of one: Joan. This was certainly almost true of his flat woodworking—linear, milled wood and furniture forms—something he only did as gifts to Mom or functional furniture for the shop or birds. Turning and flat woodworking are two very different things. Occasionally during his turning career, he would veer to the other side and try making furniture.  Sandy was never pleased with these projects, not so much because they were a ‘flat wood’ but because outcomes never met his standards. With more time, it’s easy for me to imagine he might have continued explore and refine functional forms. It was hard for him to turn down a challenge to learn more and make something new.

Dad was frequently irreverent, but kind of serious about movies he found funny. He loved interruptions by critters and other friends. I could go on. Anyway, I hope this much helps.


Thursday, 8 December 2011

Installation Week at the GPAG!

A Surgeon's Hand, An Artist's Heart is a retrospective exhibition of work by Grimsby artist Sandy Graham. This week is installation week at the GPAG and we are amazed at how much skill and dedication are evident in his pieces as we unpack, sort through and marvel!  This show is not to be missed, nor is the opening reception for that matter! Please join us this weekend on Sunday, December 11th from 2-4pm to celebrate the life and work of a spectacular local talent.

Here are some images of the installation process to give you a taste of what's to come:

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Abject Object

Suse Scholem's amazing jewellery is on display as part of her solo exhibition 'Abject Object' at Hand Held throughout December. The exhibition opened to a grand reception last Thursday eve and continues through to Christmas eve.