Who are you?
I’m Stev’nn Hall, a 40 something contemporary mixed media artist who moved to the Hammer after living in Toronto for 17 years. I paint landscapes and portraits of men bleeding.
Hamilton was an affordable place to own the means of production. I wanted a studio big enough to work and live. So I bought a house, ripped out the walls and ceiling on the first floor to make a studio — and live upstairs.
Where did you live?
I’m on Cannon and Wentworth. It was close to downtown but also gave me proximity to Barton and Ottawa Streets – which are all in transition. Going west of James is nice, but east of James is where things are changing at the earlier stages. I like neighbourhoods in transition.
What resources were helpful to you in making your decision to move here?
The arts community had already declared Hamilton a place to set up camp. This was a great advantage for me.
What things surprised you the most about Hamilton?
Good: The art gallery is impressive, and Hamilton is surrounded by hundreds of waterfalls! Bad: No new cinema downtown, and the train only goes here (from Toronto) once a day! (*Jeannie’s note – there are actually a few more trips, and now that we have service to and from the West Harbour station, we definitely will see this growing even more in service over the next coming years)
What advice do you have for anyone considering a move to Hamilton?
Look east. You’ll get bigger bang for your buck. And you’ll be on the cutting edge of a city on the rise.
What are your favourite places and things to do around the city?
Antique stores on Ottawa street, driving on Burlington Street – it’s like an industrial dreamscape from the 70’s. Visit Webster Falls and the Devil’s Punchbowl. Go to trivia night at the Baltimore House. And check out art events at Casino Artspace on Mary or HAVN on Barton.
Of all the things going on Hamilton these days – what are you most excited about?