Perfect Strangers + New Works 2011 Press Release

Perfect Strangers Art Show Pairs New West Artists with New West Residents for a New West Portrait Gallery

New Westminster, B.C. (October 28, 2011) — With less than a month to go, the New West Artists gear up for their second annual art show at the River Market, New West Artists, New Works. Only this year, there is something else too: Twenty-five artists were paired with twenty-five New Westminster residents and asked to create portraits of the people that make up the Royal City. The show-within-a-show is called Perfect Strangers all the portraits will be unveiled for the very first time on November 25th. The subjects of the works, which range from the fire marshal to local business owners, have not even seen the portraits yet.

“I loved meeting my artist. It was really great to be immortalized in a work of art! No one has ever painted me before. It doesn’t matter if he painted me abstract or realistically, I’m honored either way. I was nervous at first, but now I can’t wait to see it,” says a participant who wants to keep her participation a surprise for her friends and family until the day of the show.

Though the artists and subjects are all excited for the big reveal, the creation of the show has not been without its share of hurdles, such as the untimely departure of the curator of the Perfect Strangers show, Laura Vladimirova. Vladimirova, a U.S. citizen and resident of New York City, was unable to extend her Canadian visa in order to oversee the completion of the show.

“Initially, I conceived the show because when I arrived in New West, I was enamoured with the kindness of the community. I never felt like a stranger but like I had lived there all of my life. The charm of the people, the beautiful gardens, and history of the city inspired me. I wanted to give the artists and residents the same feelings of excitement, openness, and newness. Perfect Strangers is my love letter to the city,” says Laura who is now back in New York.

The New West Artists executive board stepped up and took over the completion of the show. The poetry of that is not lost on Vladimirova, who sees this as a perfect circle of the stranger meets artist collaboration.

The collection of portraits, drawings, prints, photographs, and sculptures will be on display and available for purchase at the River Market starting on Friday, November 25th at 6:30 p.m. and will hang for a month thereafter.


Laura Vladimirova, Curator
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Richard Armstrong, New West Artist
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Marney-Rose Edge, New West Artist
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