Tour Government House and other homes, enjoy art along the way

The Art Gallery’s 66th annual House Tour features artists at work, artistic floral displays

Art and architecture blend during the 66th Art Gallery Of Greater Victoria and Gallery Associates House Tour, set for Sunday, Sept. 22.

A shining star on the self-directed tour/fundraiser for the first time is Government House, the residence of B.C. Lt.-Gov. Janet Austin on Rockland Avenue and the ceremonial home of all British Columbians.

Not only will certain sections of the mansion be open to the public, it will also host six local artists – Arthur Vickers, Deon Venter, Kathy Venter, Robert Amos, Lou-ann Neel and Judy McLean – who will be working on pieces during the tour.

Four other notable properties in Fairfield and Oak Bay are part of the tour, which runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Not only are they relatively close together – avid walkers or cyclists can make the tour their exercise for the day – the homes share a strong connection with their impeccably curated art collections.

Among the works visitors will see from the homeowners’ collections are pieces by Pat Martin Bates, Luke Marston, Nita Forest, Karl Spreitz and Louise Bourgeois.

There’s also opportunities to chat with artists working at each location, who also include Kylee Turunen, Nancy Ruhl, Taryn Brown and Maryan Meek. Illustrating the fact that nature is art, members of the Victoria Floral Artists’ Guild will assemble imaginative floral creations to help accent the features of the homes.

“We are fortunate to have homeowners willing to open their wonderful homes to the public,” said Bev Kallstrom, House Tour 2019 co-chair. “The distinctive architecture and the exquisite variety of art ensure that visitors will enjoy a fabulous event.”

Gallery Associates volunteer, promote and support the AGGV through fundraising events and programs, and will be front and centre for this tour.

Moneys raised through the tour this year will support Gallery exhibitions and educational programming for families and children, said event co-chair Bill Huzar He added, “the imagination and creativity by homeowners offers a perfect link to the programming undertaken by the Gallery.”

Tickets cost $35 and are available at the gallery, 1040 Moss St. and online at aggv.ca/house-tour. Beginning Sept. 1, tickets will also be available at GardenWorks (Oak Bay, Saanich, and Colwood), DigThis (Broadmead Plaza, Sidney), Munro’s Books and Ivy’s Bookshop.

For more information, visit aggv.ca or call 250-384-4171.



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Government House on Rockland Avenue is part of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria’s House Tour for the first time. Photo courtesy Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

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