In a typical year, the annual Prince Edward County (PEC) Studio Tour is a rolling weekend-long celebration of local artists and their one-of-a-kind creations.
But as everyone knows, 2020 is anything but a typical year.
The PEC Studio Tour Pre-Holiday Show & Sale at The Waring House this weekend attracted approximately 150 Quinte area residents over the weekend.
Studio Tour board members were very attentive about checking that no one from a Red or Gray zone with escalated COVID-19 cases entered the hall.
“Overall the number of visitors was lower than we would have liked but understandable given the circumstances of these difficult times,” stated Dale Wainwright, Co-Chair of the PEC Studio Tour. “About 150 people came through with Sunday being busier than Saturday and we were very diligent about checking that no one from a Red or Gray Zone entered the Hall. Unfortunately we had to turn away about a dozen visitors.”
An array of art could have been seen at this event including paintings, sculpture, jewellery, glass and fibre art. Participating artists included Elaine Kent, Tom Ashbourne, Barbara Högenauer, Terry Culbert, Kirei Samuel, Laurie McRae, Gwen Roberts, Paul Verrall, Candice Woodard, Tina Osborne, Florence Chik Lau, Heather Kerr, Colleen Manestar, Jennifer Topaz Bruce, Dianne Kehoe and John Shea.
One of the showing artists spoke to The Gazette about the challenges of being an artist during this pandemic and how great it was to connect with live people.
“It’s tough for artists,” expressed Ashbourne, sculptor. “And the longer covid goes the harder it is for people because to keep yourself going you have to keep doing work but for all artists the cost of buying canvases, paints and stone and doing all the work is not insignificant so you want to be selling in order to create that cash flow to come in. Hopefully there is enough patrons and people around who are willing to support artists and support the whole artist community. It’s great to be in the county and its great to have all the other support from people around and it’s nice to have an event like this where you can actually get out to be with other artists, it’s not a very common thing lately so it’s great. You kinda always keep looking to next year for new ideas and new thoughts and were really looking forward to reconnecting with a lot more people.”
The event over all was a success for the PEC Studio Tour Board. The artists really enjoyed the experience of showcasing to live people and getting a chance to enter into the holiday spirit.
“It was wonderful for the artists and our visitors to get a chance to fully enter into the holiday spirit,” Heather Kerr, PEC Studio Tour Co-Chair told The Gazette. “We all enjoyed the large, festively decorated room overlooking the gardens The Waring House so generously donated for our event. Many thanks to the hotel’s hard working staff! We had a great turnout from the local community. We want to extend our heartfelt thank you to everyone who participated!”
The new artist members, many new to the County within the last year or so, were able to forge new connections.
“Everyone welcomed the opportunity of conversing with their fellow artists “mask to mask” so to speak after such a long period of having very little contact with one another,” said Wainwright. “And the show allowed them to show their work together in one location which they don’t get to do very often since our big annual event is, of course, a studio tour. All in all a very successful event. The PEC Studio Tour can’t thank The Waring House enough for allowing our members to show in the beautifully decorated Waring Hall that sparkled like a holiday gem!”
For more information on the PEC Studio Tour please visit https://pecstudiotour.com