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Sep. 24, 2020 | Thursday
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Pumphouse reopens with tour and online art auction
Niagara Pumphouse Arts Centre check-in for the re-opening renovation tour on August 2. (Jessica Maxwell / Niagara Now)

Events at the Niagara Pumphouse Arts Centre will look a little bit different in 2020. 

Eight months into the year, the Pumphouse was able to hold its first fundraiser on Aug. 2. The next event is an online auction set to run from Aug. 17 to 31. 

The arts centre opened its doors to more than 170 guests, at various tour times throughout the day, for a tour of completed renovations and artist talk with Beverley Barber, who is featured in the Joyner Gallery for the month of August. 

The money raised will be used to help cover operating expenses during COVID-19. 

Art from Pumphouse members is currently featured in the Walker room, artwork created by online art students is in the children’s studio and Niki Kingsmill, Ontario artist and host of the arts centre’s online watercolour classes, is showcased in the lobby. 

The centre’s first online auction will include painting, photographs and sculptures by artists from all over Ontario. 

Pumphouse exhibit chair Mark Skeffington said once the call for submissions started, the response was “far more than we expected.” 

With almost 120 submissions, he said the Pumphouse decided to break the pieces to be sold into two separate auctions rather than one auction with a large number of works.  

Twenty-five pieces will be included in the first auction, with works from Julie Ponesse, Geoff Fransworth, Emily Andrews, Win Henstock and many more.  

“We’re adapting to the situation,” Skeffington said. “Typically we wouldn’t have an auction.” 

“I think it would just be kind of exciting to see how the community responds to supporting both the artists and the Pumphouse at the same time. We don’t really know what to expect.” 

Farnsworth, a contemporary fine art painter whose work is included in the auction, also will be featured at the Pumphouse in October. He stopped by for the renovation tour.  

“I just love the Pumphouse,” he said. “It just feels exciting to get back to being able to be in an art space.” 

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