Cultivating a generation of art lovers

ArtScene Winnipeg hosts first ArtCollect event to promote local art

Photo by Lauren Siddall.

On March 23, ArtScene Winnipeg is putting on the first instalment of their new ArtCollect series at Fools & Horses coffee shop. ArtScene, an extension of Business for the Arts, is a network of young professionals across the country interested in supporting the arts.

The series will focus on starting out your art collection as a young professional, the local art market, and why engaging with local art is important.

“The idea is engaging with young professionals or young working Winnipeggers and thinking a little bit about developing their artistic taste. One thing we all do when we finish university is buy our first place or move into our first apartment, and we start thinking about what we want to put on our walls,” said Jane Helbrecht, ArtScene Winnipeg member.

“Most of us head out to IKEA or HomeSense, or wherever, and we stock up on a few prints. We want to give people some further information about how they can consider thinking a little more deeply about art and how they invest in art, even when they are on a pretty limited budget, and specifically to think a little bit about how to support and invest in local art.”

The evening will begin informally with drinks and appetizers, then Sarah Swan – U of M fine arts graduate and organizer of First Fridays in Winnipeg – will talk about how to develop a taste in art, specifically as a young professional or someone on a limited budget. After Swan, a local artist will discuss the local art scene and market, the work they do, how people can start thinking about investing in local art, and why it is important.

While this event is the first ArtCollect event to take place in Winnipeg, Helbrecht hopes to see it progress into a regular workshop series. Potential subsequent workshops might include visits and tours of local art galleries, as well as small tours around the homes of some young professionals who have significantly invested in local art. The main thing, says Helbrecht, is exposure and cultivating the next generation to have a similar appreciation for the arts.

“We’ve got this amazing city that’s sort of figuring itself out a little bit right now. One of the things we’ve always done really well is our arts and culture, and we want to make sure that continues and that we support it. Cities aren’t made vibrant by their policies, they’re made vibrant by activities, arts and culture, and things that people can do in the city,” said Helbrecht.

“I think that it’s one of the unique advantages that Winnipeg has – we have a huge art community and we have a lot of people interested in the art community. But a constant challenge for any individual artist or art institution is that as people age, who are going to be the next supporters and the next patrons of the arts? Doing these types of events is really about making sure that we’re cultivating that next generation of supporters to make sure our city keeps doing what it’s doing.”


The first ArtsCollect workshop takes place on March 23 at Fools & Horses (379 Broadway) from 7 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $15 and are available at