No red carpet, no black tie—the opening of the St. Paul and District Arts Foundation’s new gallery on June 11 was an informal affair.

Local artists including Herman Poulin and Eric Spoeth were joined by other local dignitaries for the opening. 

The first exhibit in the brand-new gallery, fittingly, had a Youth Art theme. Artists in Grades 5 – 12 showed their works in different media and disciplines including painting, sculpture, pottery, and beadwork. The students were from across the St. Paul Education district from Two Hills to Mallaig, including homeschooled students.

The gallery is in the foundation’s Maggie Porozni centre on Main Street in St. Paul. The centre’s front space was renovated to incorporate new walls and partitions suitable for hanging artworks. There is new variable lighting for the room that allows for specific ambiances, and lighting to showcase the individual works.

Some swinging walls allow the space to be reconfigured as necessary.

“It’s meant to be a place where someone can look in and be fully engaged in the artwork,” said foundation treasurer Valerie Pratch.

“The intent is to exhibit artwork and provide an opportunity for local artists,” she said. The space is also suitable for out-of-town artists and travelling exhibitions, featuring “all types of art and all types of artists.”

The gallery opening coincides with the 10th anniversary of the St. Paul and District Arts Foundation’s incorporation. Foundation chair Richard Wild unveiled a plaque honouring the Maggie Porozni Foundation for the Arts and the Porozni family at the event.

Samantha Mudryk creates a new work. Paula Fitzgerald
Leo Spoeth and his sculpture. Paula Fitzgerald

The gallery is in the Maggie Porozni building on St. Paul’s main street. Paula Fitzgerald
Treasurer Valerie Pratch receives a congratulatory bouquet from her daughter Anna. Paula Fitzgerald
Richard Wild unveils the commemorative plaque. Paula Fitzgerald