Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Art Battle

I had a really interesting conversation with the owner of the Aroma Espresso Bar on Bloor the other day. Suspecting I had an interest in the arts, he told me about something really cool he had just experienced. It's called an Art Battle and the name describes it perfectly. Basically, Art Battles are live painting competitions that make art exciting in a way most of us have never experienced before.

There are two choices when attending an art battle. One can enter their name in a draw and potentially be chosen to compete, or one can buy out of the draw for a $15 patron fee. Those who compete have to work within the time and paint restrictions given, while the patrons are given a ballot to cast a vote for their favourite painting. The winning painter gets a prize of $500 and the rest of the paintings are either auctioned off or destroyed - the patrons decide.

This fascinating event combines a static art form with live-performance (something I spoke more in depth about here), and opens up the normally intimate process of painting. Artists often respond in surprising ways to the pressure and constraints of the situation and only democracy gets to decides who will be successful.

Their website doesn't say when the next one will be, but I can't wait to experience it for myself!

Casandra Campbell

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