With Christmas fast approaching, folks are making their lists and checking them twice, all the while wondering what to get for that special someone or the person who has everything. Original artworks can often be purchased at prices similar to those of mass market prints in home décor stores, but original pieces have lasting value.
Choosing a work of art as a gift can be intimidating, particularly for those who think they know nothing about art. But when buying a gift, you need to know less about art and more about the person for whom you’re buying. Start by focussing on the type of art: Would they like something wearable, like jewelery or clothing? Or something functional, like a vase, bowl, or keepsake box? If you’re thinking of a painting or sculpture, what are the colour schemes and lighting like in the person’s home? How much space do they have? What kind of art do they already own? Would they like something abstract or representational? A landscape, cityscape or portrait? There are many artists working on the Coast in many different mediums. Looking through artists’ websites or listing sites like Purple Banner or Sunshine Coast Art Crawl are good places to start your search and get a feel for an artist’s style to help you narrow your choices.
Visiting a gallery will provide you with a variety of artists and mediums to choose from, all in one place. There are several galleries in Gibsons and Sechelt that represent local artists and with experienced staff to answer your questions. Often, the staff are the artists themselves who can tell you the story behind a particular piece. The Landing Artists will be at the Gibsons Public Art Gallery through December with 11 different artists showcasing everything from jewelery and scarves to paintings and sculpture. Throughout December, the prices of paintings have been reduced at the Harbour Gallery in Pender Harbour. The Kube Studios is running their 1-2-3 Christmas Show: 20 participating artists are creating works no larger than 24”x 24” with original pieces priced at $100, $200 or $300. Take your time when visiting an artist’s studio or gallery and go with your instincts, letting that special piece “speak” to you. Still, art is a very personal choice, so ask the gallery or artist if they have a return or exchange policy. And if there’s just too much to choose from, you can always ask if they will provide a gift certificate. It’s all about finding that piece of original art that will make a great one-of-a-kind gift and that will be treasured for a lifetime.