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Art parties come to the MacLaren

Each event will feature a different creative project led by professional artists from the region

A new series of art events hosted by the MacLaren Art Centre is adding a creative choice to Barrie’s downtown entertainment scene, with sold out attendance for its pilot date.

On the last Wednesday of each month, adults can enjoy interactive “Art Parties” led by professional artists from the region. The series kicks off on Jan. 29 with an embroidery workshop instructed by local painter and printmaker Katie Green.

Each Art Party will feature a different creative project based on the instructor’s area of expertise, so every month is a new and exciting experience. Participants can pair their art-making session with pizza, a quesadilla or samosas and a glass of wine purchased from The Gallery Café. No prior experience is necessary and those of all skill levels are welcome.

The premiere Art Party with Katie Green will explore embroidery on textiles with unique silkscreened imagery. Participants will learn the basics of embroidery by stitching over top of silkscreened imagery to embellish and personalize an illustrated image. Everyone will take home a hand-stitched work of art they can be proud to call their own.

Those who missed registration for the first Art Party can take heart knowing the series will continue throughout the year. Upcoming parties include One of a Kind Monotypes with Kim Brett on February 26, Soft Sculpture with Ingi Gould on March 25 and a Painting Party with Andy Vail on April 29.

MacLaren Education Officer Tyler Durbano says “Many people don’t have time to commit to a full six or eight week course. In these social workshops, we want to offer participants the chance to learn a new skill and take home a handmade artwork in the amount of time they would spend meeting a friend for a coffee. It’s our hope that everyone involved will become more knowledgeable about the talented artists that call our community home, and make new like-minded friends along the way.”

Find out more about MacLaren Art Parties at or by phoning 705-721-9696. Registration is available online, over the phone or in person at the MacLaren Art Centre’s 37 Mulcaster Street location. Tickets are $25 each. MacLaren Members receive a 10 per cent discount.