Monday 22 November 2021

VSC Artist of the Week ~ Sharon Wareing

This week, Victoria Sketch Club's Artist of the Week is Sharon Wareing.

"I love the west coast beaches, the ocean, the brings a sense of peace to my soul in this crazy world."

Sunday 14 November 2021

VSC Artist of the Week ~ Nirmala Greenwell

Drawing and painting from life is one of my favourite pastimes, any subject matter will do, whether landscapes or people, portraiture, animals, objects, etc. in acrylic oils or watercolour, dry media etc. Visit to see more work.

Sunday 7 November 2021

VSC Artist of the Week ~ Joan Head

VSC member Joan Head currently has an exhibit with the PWD, as part of a 3-month rotating exhibit. "Art is part of my life! Diagnosed with PD in 2019, painting has made me embrace the challenges and my fight to paint well with every stroke."

While this exhibit is limited to PWP members, you can follow Joan's news via her instagram page (@paintingsbyjoanhead) or on Facebook
Here are a A Little series she enjoyed painting on 4" x 12" deep canvases of images from her backyard garden. Joan's preferred background colour is black enabling the colours of the subjects to pop!

Tuesday 2 November 2021

October History Corner ~ by John Lover

History Corner
by John Lover
In 1909 the formation of the Island Arts Club was welcome news for a number of British lower middle class educated women with arts school training, who had emigrated to Vancouver Island around the turn of the 19th century. Amongst this group was Margaret Kitto, who, although like the others a typical traditionalist watercolour painter, was the most professional. She was also destined to make a distinct contribution to this newly formed organization in other significant ways.

One of a family of six children, Margaret Elizabeth Kitto was born in Islington. London, England in 1873, where her father was a book publisher. She studied art before coming to Victoria with her family in 1891.

Kitto was a member of the Sketching Club (1900-1909) in which, along with Josephine Crease, she led sketching parties to local scenes. She was a charter member of the Island Arts Club, later the Island Arts and Crafts Society, serving on the executive committee 1911-1917, as second vice president 1918-1919 and  vice-president in 1925.

From 1922, as a painter and sculptor she operated the Deco Art Studio with fellow artist Lillian Sweeney, producing various art and craft creations for sale. She became well-known for her watercolour paintings of local scenes, reproduced on cards. Kitto, unusually for a local woman artist at this time, was able to secure a modest living from these sales, supplemented by teaching at the Sacred Heart Convent School, the Western Art Studio and evening courses organized by the school board.  

Among her pupils at the Western Art Studio in the early 1920s, was Edythe Hembroff-Schleicher, later to be friend, painting colleague and biographer of Emily Carr. In a 1981 publication Edythe recalled Margaret affectionately as “a warm, out-going, frail person, who was able to pass on her infectious enthusiasm for painting to her many young charges.”   

Although involved in mural painting and decoration, ceramics and textiles, Kitto operated primarily in watercolour, and she was specially known in this media for depictions of Mount Baker and vibrant local scenes of sun-yellow broom. Her work can be found in the collections of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV), the BC Provincial Archives and in archive locations in Quebec and Ontario.

More recently, she featured in a 2016 exhibition, Water + Pigment and Paper, at the AGGV. (at right: The Lions, by Margaret Kitto)

The Society spent fifteen years working on Margaret Kitto’s original and persistent idea of establishing a permanent art gallery in Victoria. Her dedication to this notion seemed to have reached fruition when the Canadian Pacific Railway provided accommodation attached to the Crystal Garden in 1925, sadly the same year as Margaret's passing. She was interred in the Ross Bay Cemetery.