Creatively speaking, Vera Dighton Laser is the architect of her own artistic world.
The St. James resident is among 45 Manitoba artists scheduled to feature in Artarama. Sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, the event is Winnipeg’s largest charity art exhibit and sale, according to Artarama chair Al Borys.
A fine arts graduate of the University of Manitoba and a former commercial artist for the Hudson’s Bay Co., Laser has been involved with the event for several years.
"It’s very well-run and I’m impressed with what they do with the dollars they raise. I enjoy visiting with other participating artists and sometimes it’s the only time I see them all year," she said. "The very first time I sold something, I was very encouraged, although I was surprised someone else wanted it. But then I realized my work is unique and I’m pleased that some people like it."
A fan of detail and realism who works in both watercolour and pen and ink, Laser loves capturing old doors on canvas: "In my mind, I love to recreate these beautiful doors that architects design."
"It may not be that unusual to see me, sketch pad and camera in hand, scouring the exchange district, looking for that special grand door I’d like to reproduce. Bank buildings, stores, warehouses and even a hotel provide me with a treasure trove of subjects for my art," Laser added.
Artarama 2013 will be held at Mary Mother of the Church at 85 Kirkbridge Dr. in Richmond West on Fri., April 5 from 5 to 9 p.m., Sat., April 6 between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. and Sun., April 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will also be a raffle at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, but winners do not have to be present.
The event is the 17th annual charity art show organized by Our Lady of the Prairie KC Council 5264. Borys said the waiting list for space to exhibit at Artarama is long, which means he can be selective when choosing exhibitors to maximize the quality of art on display.
The show is the council’s primary fundraiser, with proceeds going to numerous organizations, including Rossbrook House, Habitat for Humanity and the Christmas Cheer Board.
Art at the event is displayed in two galleries. The first will contain framed art in various mediums, including oil, acrylic, watercolour, collage and etching. Artists are encouraged to bring additional paintings to make sure the gallery remains stocked.
The second gallery will contain unframed art and thousands of cards. "The beauty of the unframed art is that not only are they much lower-priced than the other gallery, but frames can be tailored to the décor of one’s home," Borys said.
Hungry visitors will also be able to visit a café offering sandwiches and home baking, organized by the families of the Knights.
There is no admission charge for Artarama. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.