Elaine Smookler, These Boots

“I had just moved back to what felt like a very grey Toronto. I had been invited to read a piece I had written for an event in a Gallery on Queen Street.  I remember walking in and seeing Sarah’s piece, “These Boots” on the wall and feeling an immediate, electric connection with it.  I had no money, I had just moved to town, but I absolutely had to have that piece of art in my life.  It had a joy, vitality and clowny quality that resonated deeply and felt like a vitamin I needed to nourish me in my new winter home. As an added bonus, when I went to pick the piece up from Sarah’s studio, our brief conversation  sparked a friendship that endures to this day.” -Elaine Smookler, Psychotherapist, teacher, writer, performer    

Janet Forbes: Bees

It’s a small piece and I often look at it and smile. -Janet Forbes, Carpenter & Trades Person
Janet saw Sarah’s work for the first time at a Christmas craft sale at her yoga studio and was attracted to the pieces and also enjoyed talking with her. “I was attracted to the piece because it was fun and light-hearted,” says Janet Forbes about purchasing one of Sarah Hunters works adding, “bees were very much in the news because they were being killed by our use of insecticides and pesticides and I wanted to remind myself of how necessary and important they are to our world.”

Jenny Knox: Whimsical Forest Creatures

I have 4 pieces of art by Sarah. I love them all – each of the creatures seem to have a personality of their own. It’s as tho they come to life as she paints them. -Jenny Knox

Having known Sarah for many years and first saw her artwork at her parent’s house. Today Jenny owns a set of paintings that she still loves, “I love Sarah’s series of whimsical forest creatures. I bought one of them because it exuded joy and I wanted that lovely energy in my home.”

 

 

 

Sally Rappeport

Sally Rappeport is one of Sarah Hunter’s earliest patrons having acquired several pieces including [insert piece title]. As an acupuncture and herbalist,  Sally currently lives in Brooklyn but the two met during university where she first saw her works hanging in Sarah’s apartment.

“The piece with the dogs is my favorite.  It has such energy and passion.”  -Sally Rappeport

Parris Sander on Hannah Gluckstein

“I love the quiet dignity that she imbued her with, her face is proud, butch and feminine all at the same time.  I just love all of it.” -Parris Sander
Parris Sander is a legal administrator for a large corporation downtown Toronto who saw Sarah Hunter’s portrait of Hannah Gluckstein at a Nuit Rose show. “The moment I walked into the show I saw this portrait and I couldn’t stop looking at it. I kept pointing it out to people, and finally, I knew I had to buy it… I believe it was meant to be.”

Maria Calandra: Tennessee Williams

“The portrait represents our shared love of classic films and theatre. It represents queer history in the arts and it impacts on mainstream culture.” -Maria Calandra

A dear friend of Sarah ‘TurtlArt’ Hunter, Maria Calandra met Sarah through their mutual love for film and theatre, which is how she came to purchase Tennessee Williams. One of Maria’s most memorable experiences was their visit to the Shaw Festival where they saw Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. This solidified Williams appreciation as being ‘our thing’. Shortly after that outing, “I saw the Williams portrait at an exhibit and knew it had to be mine!”

Akasha Art Projects: Power Women

Sonja Scharf and Kelly Kyle are the creative directors at Akasha Art ProjectsThey had known Sarah Hunter through the art community but got to know her when she came to them for framing. But it was her participation in their annual Artival show which ultimately inspired them to purchase Janet Flanner and Lady Una Troubridge from the queer artist portraits series.

Leslie Robinson: The Complexities of Sappho

“I am by no means an art expert. That being said, I remember when I saw this piece, I was struck by the complex use of black and greys and the subtlety of the face that she painted. Without even really knowing what the piece was about or even called, I felt moved by it and kept looking at it as though I wanted to have it.” says Leslie Robinson about Sappho which he purchased.

Leslie Robinson is a second-year law student, friend of Sarah Hunter and frequent visitor to their art shows and studio. Leslie adds that he was attracted to this particular work because of it’sstrong feminine feel.” To see more of Sarah’s work, click here.

 

Portraits of Writers: Oakwood Village Library and Arts Centre 

Portraits of Writers by Sarah Hunter is currently on display at the Oakwood Village Library and Arts Centre until May 31st.

ARTIST STATEMENT
I began my series of portraits of artists about 10 years ago. I wanted to start to represent some of the great artists that had inspired me along the road to becoming an artist myself. As I delved into this exploration it became obvious to me that many of the artists that had inspired me were writers. I had always loved books as a child and was a prodigious reader. If I was interested in an author I would often try to read everything they had written or as much of their body of work as I could manage to find.  Some of the first portraits I created were of legendary artists that had inspired me. They included images of Dickens, James Joyce, Katherine Mansfield, Daphne du Maurier and E.M Forester.

Then I realized it would be interesting to do an ongoing series of queer artists that had inspired me over the years including writers, painters, composers, singers and dancers.

I feel that many the figures in the queer artist series were important models for me growing up as a young gay artist. I was inspired by their amazing contributions to our society. As a gay person this was very significant for me as I had not had this kind of overt role model growing up as a teenager.

The portraits in this collection of work represent an overview of this ongoing series of artists that have inspired me. The portrait of Dickens and the Image of Giacometti are earlier works and the more recent ones include T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia), Eudora Welty, Isak Dinesen, and Marcel Proust.

To purchase works or to see more from her portraits collection: click here.

Portraits of Writers
by Sarah Hunter
May 01-31, 2018
Oakwood Village Library and Arts Centre