Below is an article kindly written for us by Jeff Tribe, and featuring several tour artists:
The Oxford Studio Tour always has been, is and always will be a diverse, inclusive artistic space.
There is commonality amongst participants given each must successfully pass an application process confirming commitment to their art. Beyond that, the 33 participants on this year’s 16th Annual event offer their unique vision through 16 distinct media.
“I am in awe of it all,” said Wendy Gielis, a first-time member who joined after touring last year’s event with her sister Monique. “And what they create out of it.”
This year’s tour is scheduled for Saturday, May 6th and Sunday, May 7th, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days.
A full palette of detailed information including descriptions of individual artists and examples of their work, tour maps and locations and event sponsors is listed on the website www.oxfordstudiotour.ca. Glossy, full-colour brochures featuring the same are available from Tillsonburg’s Station Arts Centre, Ingersoll’s Creative Arts Centre, the Woodstock Art Gallery, Tourism Oxford, Early Bird Coffee and participating artists. Interested persons are also invited to phone 519-842-6151 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. During the tour, red signs will be planted to further identify the tour’s 15 locations.
Sue Goossens, a professional Otterville-area-based watercolour artist and tour founder recommends using the brochure or website to plan out an itinerary efficiently using as much time as guests would like to commit. Some strive to take in every site and artist across two full days, others pick locations which particularly interest them for a half or single day. Any amount of time will however, open the door to a wide range of artistic expression.
“We are very fortunate to have such a variety of talented artists in Oxford County,” said Goossens. The diversity developed organically she continued, believing it is an Oxford tour strength. Those enjoying the opportunity can expect to view oil, acrylic and watercolour paintings, graphite, pen-and-ink, encaustic, collage and mixed media renditions, pottery, jewellery, photography, digital art, weaving and fibre arts along with gourds and woodworking.
“We have everything,” Goossens said. “And we haven’t had to work at the variety, we’re fortunate, it has just happened.”
Tillsonburg-based Tabitha Verbuyst’s own diversity is expressed in dramatic dark and alternatively, light dreamlike interpretations of movement, colour and life. She looks forward to the tour weekend as a focussed concentration on the depth and breadth of Oxford County’s artistic community, for both public and participants.
“It’s great to work with so many talented artists,” Verbuyst said, citing benefits including shared peer and community exposure. “And from that, they gain personal growth and new opportunities in the world of art.
“Don’t just take our word for it, come and see for yourself,” she smiled in conclusion.