Nine professional artists are a part of an event that marks 47 years in the same spot when more than 100 artworks take the spotlight starting March 19.
“The show usually takes about a year to prepare for,” said Maureen Ness, show director of the annual art event at Glenlyon Norfolk School. The five-day show, highlighted with professional lighting and door prizes, also serves as a fundraiser for the club that features a juried membership of about 50.
“We sell at least 30 per cent of our art at this show,” Ness said. “It’s also our fundraiser. It helps with all of our expenses for the year.” The club promotes its membership by providing demonstrations or nude models during its regular gatherings at Windsor Pavilion.
“Within the group, the profile is a combination of art hobbyists, emerging artists and established artists, but all well-seasoned. It’s not a learning club,” Ness said. They’re found painting en plein air during the warm months in places such as Gorge Park, Finnerty Gardens and Government House.
The Victoria Sketch Club itself is 110 this year, having operated under a handful of monikers over the years and boasting some high-profile names. Past members include notables such as Emily Carr, Jack Shadbolt, Max Maynard, Samuel Maclure, and Ted Harrison. Current members continue the tradition and include prize-winning members of the Federation of Canadian Artists and are hanging in several galleries throughout Victoria.
The oldest art group in continuous operation in Western Canada, the VSC is formerly named Island Art and Craft Society since 1909, and then in 1952 the Victoria Sketch Club.
The Victoria Sketch Club show runs March 19 to 24 at the Glenlyon Norfolk School junior campus 1701 Beach Dr. Opening night is Tuesday, March 19 from 7 to 9 p.m. with guest speaker Oak Bay Mayor Kevin Murdoch. The show continues Wednesday to Saturday, 10 a.m to 7 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.