If there is one thing that everyone is talking about in Hamilton, it has to be the art scene, and how the creative scene has literally helped transform people’s perceptions of certain areas of the city. Love it or hate it, you can’t debate that the creative community is here, passionate and making a difference
The James Street Art Crawl – the 2nd Friday of every month (yes even in the winter months) the galleries, restaurants and shops on James Street North open their doors to the public to check out musical acts, new and favourite artists shows. In the warmer months, you’ll also find all sorts of vendors set up outside on the sidewalks.
Julia Veenstra – Julia is I think my absolute favourite local artist. I am lucky enough to have one of her large scale Giclee Prints in my dining room. Swoooon! In 2013 Julia introduced the Square Foot Show, where she sold 12″x12″ original pieces of her own for $225 each – the first was such a hit in 2014 she curated other local artists to contribute and had another sell out year! I have lined up myself to grab some of these wonderful pieces of hers, and of Paul Elia, another local artist.
Centre3 – an artist-run centre that promotes print and media arts, offering workshops and a venue for exhibits and sale of a variety of artistic products. My go to place for cool screen print t-shirts
Gooderham Gallery & Fine Art Studio – At the corner of Cannon & Catherine, you can find the workspace of watercolour Artist Eva Ivanov
The James North General Store – in 2014 photographer Darren Kregar took over the General Store, and it has become a wonderful place to find not only prints of his own work, but also original and prints of area arts at all price points
The Art Gallery of Hamilton – A renovation designed by Hamilton’s own Bruce Kuwabara was completed in 2005. The AGH offers free admission – Friday Free Night – the first Friday of the month from 4 pm – 8 pm, courtesy of Orlick Industries. It houses over 9500 pieces, and some of my favourites are the Keith Haring Outdoor Green Sculptures
Jelly Brothers – Dan and Matt Jelly are a pair of incredibly talented brothers, artists and active members of the Hamilton Community. You can find Dan’s original photographs in The Hamilton Store, their popular Neighbourhood prints are sold at Mixed Media on James North. And you can order prints off their website as well.
Stev’nn Hall – once a Toronto based artist, Stev’nn now calls Hamilton home and works out of an incredible home studio creating his stunning works mixing photographs and paint. I don’t own one of his pieces….yet…. 🙂
Mixed Media – Since we’re talking about them, Dave Kuruc and wife Teresa Devries, have this neighbourhood favourite for all your art supplies, unique one of kind letterpress gifts, post cards, and note books. Their shop is an amazing place to run into friends, and it is usually packed on Art Crawl nights. They are invested in their business as well as the community as a whole.
Dave Hind – another personal favourite, Dave’s works can be found throughout the city including Mulberry Cafe, and even on John Street North on the exterior of a building, and of course in various galleries
Supercrawl – the annual 3 day event isn’t all about the music, it is also a showcase of amazing art installations and always leaves a mark on the city for days and weeks after. Case in point is the amazing en Masse mural from 2012 that occupies the side of Dr. Disc.** At Supercrawl 2016, a new street art mural was installed by Pete Fowler!
Lester Coloma – if you’re walking around the James Street North area, you won’t be able to miss Lester’s amazing mural’s at the Tivoli Lot and on the side of Mixed Media – how can you not notice a giant rabbit riding the back of a tortoise??
Paul Elia – His digitally enhanced photographs and illustrations of Hamilton locations are synonymous with the city, his gallery used to be house in his mid century modern home on Glenfern which he opens to the public every Holiday season – in 2017 he relocated to a more industrial space in East Hamilton at 1167 Cannon East
The Allsorts Gallery – a great resource for local gifts, pottery, artwork and jewellery – it is a go to for holiday gifts for me!
The Cotton Factory – 270 Sherman– in lower Hamilton, yes, north of Barton *gasp*, you’ll find 270 Sherman, which is a former cotton mill that has been transformed into a creative industries complex, with space for workshops, galleries, office space for creative professionals, and studios for artists.
Gord Leverton – Another of the originals I am blessed to have in my personal collection. Gord’s style is just as distinct as Julia Veenstra’s yet SO different – very clean, contemporary lines, his pieces are signified with the rooftops of central Hamilton’s old homes
STORE – in 2014 the Leon Furs building was restored and opened as STORE. A shop that features pottery, artwork and jewellery of local artists including those scamps, the Jelly Brothers
Dundas Valley School of Art – an independent, not for profit art school, you can take a course in art history, ceramics, drawing, jewellery-making, painting, printmaking, design, photography and sculpture. 2014 marked it’s 50th anniversary
Creations Gallery – since 1986, a family owned gallery in Ancaster, was just expanded in November 2014 to allow for more display space for artist shows, including one of my faves Dave Hind!
Hamilton Arts Council – A central hub for creating new partnerships among individual artists, organizations, and businesses in the region
Artword Artbar – a performance space, cafe and theatre just off James North
What People are Saying
- CBC November 2017 – Province gives $3M to community arts centre in Ancaster
- CBC February 2017 – How a Hamilton brewery created a “global art gallery” using craft beer
- The Silhouette February 2017 – Hamilton Comic Book Debuts
- CBC March 2015 – City increases Hamilton art grants for first time in 15 years
- BlogTO Feb 2015 – Top 10 Art Galleries in Hamilton
- The Spectator June 2013 – A vivid vision for James North
- The Toronto Star – December 2012 – Hamilton in the midst of a grassroots cultural revival
- CBC May 2012 – Hamilton Artists leading downtown’s rebirth