Inaugural Kingston Art Walk ready to pop up in local shops

The first (but sort of second) Kingston Road Art Walk will hit Kingston Road between Hannaford and Henley Gardens on Saturday, June 21.

Diptych by Ian Lawson
Diptych by Ian Lawson

“We test drove it last year during the spring festival,” said Katya Nosko, owner of The Great Escape bookstore. “Last year was a toe in the water. This year we’re considering the inaugural art walk.”

Ten to 12 artists, mostly Ontario College of Art and Design University students and recent graduates, will hold pop-up gallery during the Kingston Road Village Street Festival. The one-day galleries are being set up in existing businesses, wherever space allows. The Great Escape, for example, is hosting art in its basement and garage, normally storage areas.

Nosko said she’s always appreciated the Beach focus of local art events.

“There’s a lot of talent in this area.”

However, this event, with its focus on young artists, will add to the art scene in the East End by allowing young artists to show their work for free.

Automaton by Caleb Mitchell
Automaton by Caleb Mitchell

“We’ll see if we can make some headway into cultural augmentation,” said Nosko.

Artists have been recruited with the help of Nosko’s young adult sons, who are involved in the arts and acting and include one current OCAD U student.

After speaking with her sons, numerous local authors and poets in her store and seeing the success of the increasingly high-profile concerts at Kingston Road United Church, Nosko is not alone in believing Kingston Road Village could become a creative hot spot.

“We all, of a piece, feel that this is a good spot to create an East End arts hub,” she said.

The inaugural Kingston Road Art Walk runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 21, during the Kingston Road Village Street Festival. Postcard maps of the pop-up gallery locations will be available in stores between Hannaford Street and Victoria Park Avenue during the event.

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