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Music provides treatment option during Art Attack

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Cathy Dobson

There’s an energy in the room during a Sarnia Art Attack that leaves the artists and their fans wanting more, says co-ordinator Billie Jo Gage.

That would explain the unprecedented number of painters participating in the April Fools’ Day First Friday Art Attack at 100 Christina St.

Art Attack, in support of this year’s Artwalk, is an old fundraising idea with a new twist.

A collection of local artists will spend three hours painting to music, while the public has an opportunity to watch, admire, enjoy the vibe and possibly a glass of wine.

As the evening progresses, raffle tickets are sold and drawn for each piece of finished art.

“It’s a perfect collision of music and art,” says Gage.

This Friday, April 1, 14 local painters will be working on their canvases to the tunes of Port Huron DJ Franck Nowak, a guy who likes to play a lot of funk and soul.

“We used to hold Art Attack annually but there’s such high demand that we’re running it twice a year now,” said Gage.

“The artists love working with the people in the room providing this great energy, and people love to see the creative process. They can appreciate how much work goes into art.”

The first four Sarnia Art Attacks featured live musicians. This time, a live DJ will provide the sounds inspiring what goes down on canvas.

Participating artists include Laura Kreviazuk, Bill Walters, Neal Campbell, Angela Green, Gary Nixon, Kathy Rath, Caitlyn Jean, bodypainter Cat Cabajar, Adam Miner, photographer Melissa Upfold, James Burdan, Maria Rondon, Kristin Palombo and Francis Martin.

Appreciative spectators watch a canvas take shape during last year's Art Attack at 100 Christina St.  Photo courtesy Bravo Fotografia
Appreciative spectators watch a canvas take shape during last year’s Art Attack at 100 Christina St.
Photo courtesy Bravo Fotografia

Each donates their time and their Art Attack. Previous events have raised thousands of dollars to finance the live entertainment at Artwalk, a cultural festival held each June on the streets of downtown Sarnia.

Lambton’s Creative County Fund recently announced $7,000 to support music at this year’s Artwalk, bolstering plans for a successful weekend, said Gage.

“We are so excited to get the grant but the more we raise at Art Attack, the more possibilities there are to amp Artwalk up and add more.”

Earlier Art Attacks were held in other venues, primarily downtown bars that drew reasonable support. But now that it’s held at the new Artwalk headquarters at 100 Christina St., near Davis Street, more people are attending.

It’s free to get in. Raffle tickets for individual paintings sell for $5 each or 5 for $20.  Painting starts at 6:30 p.m.


If you’re a poetry fan, listen up!

Six Ontario anthology editors and contributors will be joining local writers on Sunday, April 3 for The Pathways of Poetry Gathering.

The Ontario Poetry Society hosts this event from 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. at the “Famous Room” in John’s Restaurant on London Line.

This year’s gathering includes book launches, featured readings, and an open mic with all the poets.

Fran Figge, the society’s president, and Keith Inman, an international, award-winning poet and author of War Poems: Screaming at Heaven, will join Sarnia’s Norma West Linder, Venera Fazio, Lynn Tait, Debbie Okun Hill and Rhonda Melanson.

Admission is free. Sign up for open mic at the door.

The Arts Journal reflects the cultural fabric of our community. If you have a story idea, contact Cathy Dobson at 226-932-0985 or [email protected].



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