Definition of Network: “a group or system of interconnected people or things.” Simple explanation, Eh!
However, looking closely the new Gananoque Arts Network (GAN) takes on real meaning.: GAN states, “Our goal as an Arts organization is to connect and support local creative individuals in all mediums to nurture and grow the Art and Culture in Gananoque.” In other words, to share and help shape artistic ideas.
Well, by all accounts, it is working. Dennis O’Connor and Jeannie Catchpole were the key instigators, and the Network has grown since its inception. Dennis and Jeannie found the physical space on the main street in Gananoque, ON. Volunteer Coordinator Brian Donnelly, was quick to explain that the space is not an art gallery per se but rather a physical space to share and support artists using different media.
Inside the front door is the Painted Turtle Café – with great coffee and a few tables to sit, think, talk and share. There is a piano close by, and one of the most popular events is the Kitchen Party, happening on the 4th Wednesday of the month, when you can perform, listen or and sing along. On Saturday afternoons, the knitters take over, and there is no better fun than making new friends while hearing clicking and watching flying needles for an hour or two.
Throughout the year, there are curated exhibitions. Right now, there is an exhibition entitled Family. And true to form, the artwork on display is not your usual or simple family snapshots – no, there are various themed pieces which, when explained, give the viewer the chance to say, "Wow, I never thought of that, but how clever.”
Primarily the space allows artists to interact helping others to learn and to promote their creativity. There is a long list of workshops and new ones being developed for the winter months. In addition, there are several art studios right on the floor, allowing artists to interact with visitors and other network members. Spaces are rented by the month, which helps with finances.
As a nonprofit, finances are always an important issue, but Brian praised the support of several sponsors including the TD Bank and the Town of Gananoque. Once established, they will apply for additional grants and support. "Volunteers," Brian says, "are what makes the place what it is. It is their unique ideas and their follow-through that has made the place such a success in a few short months."
Be sure to join their GAN Facebook page, and watch local media to hear about all the happenings. and drop by 167 King Street East for a coffee and some inspiration. Come join the Network!
By Susan W. Smith, Editor, email@example.com
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