Act 304

Go to an opening

We have a lovely public art gallery in Salmon Arm. About once a month, on a Friday evening, there’s a free event (admission is always by donation) to open the show featuring art, of course, live music, food and refreshment. It’s a delightful way to start a weekend and it’s easy on the budget.

Art is for everyone, not just elitist patrons as many might think. Not so. So push the envelope a bit and try an event you’ve never tried before (I’ve been a time or two as it is an interest of mine) but there are other types of openings at private galleries and studios. They are held for the public and they enjoy your company. So go ahead, give it a try. You might just like it. And it’s far cheaper (and more interesting), than a night at the movies, a drink at the bar or even a stop at the drive-thru.

Act 112

Buy Original Art

It’s a bit sad that I have to distinguish art as original – as opposed to unoriginal – which is sadly what passes as art in most homes – mass produced decorator products sold at major retailers – it’s not art – it’s decor – and as far as decor goes, if it came from Winners or Home Sense or Pier One, you can be sure that only you and several other hundred thousand people have its uniqueness as your own.

Decor is important. It makes our homes our own. Trouble is, we live in a world of imitation. I’m sure you’re not the only one to notice that many of us have the same decor in our homes as other people we know. Why is that?

When I was little, my favourite pass time was spending time with my grandmothers – each as unique as they come. And their homes had marvelous, wonderful unique things with stories all of their own. My grandmaman wrought iron sculpture of the Eiffel Tower she brought home from her trip to Paris. My Gramma’s brass sculpture of a fishing boat from Hong Kong. That was art to me because it told their story in a way nothing else could. If I could go back in time, I’d go to both of those places to take it all in again.

My parents have always been great supporters of the arts and while that might not have made my house the house of choice for us as teens, it certainly made me a happier more appreciative person. I love art too. And our home is graced with lovely, small, modest, unique and original pieces that help tell our stories as much as the stories of the talented artists who created the works.

How is this debt defying, you ask? We’ll, here’s the kicker. Everything we’ve purchased over the years is worth much more than we paid for it. It’s an asset. Not an expense. It has and will keep its value. What’s more, if you buy Canadian art to display at your place of work, it’s a legitimate (and delightful) expense. I wish my printer and roll-y office chair brought me as much joy as my art. Beautiful, original, debt defying art.

Plus, when you buy art, you support local artists, local culture who in turn support your local economy. Spending never looked (or felt) so good.