Monday, November 18, 2013

35th Annual National Business for the Arts Partnerships Awards

I had the opportunity to attend the Annual National Business for the Arts Partnership Awards. Each year, Business for the Arts (BFA) organizes this event to recognize, celebrate and thank the business and art leaders for their support of the arts across Canada. It's a very inspiring organization who is "dedicated to the proposition that any nation lives by its creative minds, and that such creativity has to be carefully nurtured.” 

The event this year consisted of the gala and a 1920s-themed after party. It took place at The Carlu, also known as Eaton's Seventh Floor and the best example of Art Moderne style in Toronto. It was designed by famed French architect and designer Jacques Carlu. The interior is stunning.

Upon arrival,  there was a photographer taking pictures of guests on a red carpet. It was great to see the various outfits of attendants. It was a black tie event, so most men were wearing black suits, while most women were wearing very creative attire inspired by the 1920s flapper girl era. 
I started to sketch right away during the cocktail hour. A pianist playing in the background created a great ambience for everyone.  There was so much I wanted to capture and managed to make three sketches during that time. It really was a feast for the eyes. I didn't really see time go by. 
After a little while, guests were then invited to the dining area for the gala for the presentation of the awards and some entertainment. The gala was hosted by Canadian Juno Award-winning Molly Johnson who also sang. I also had a great time meeting and chatting with some of the guests at my table. The food was good. We had a nice 3 course meal.  I was also able to do a quick sketch during dinner, between courses. There was a lot of glasses on the tables :) 
During the event, we had the opportunity to hear from the recipients of the various awards presented that night, which was very inspiring, especially the ones won by Gary Slaight, President & CEO of Slaight Communications Inc. and Slaight Music Inc., and Steven Delany, Senior Associate in Corporate Finance at Paradigm Capital Inc.  It was great to get to hear from them what inspires them to contributes to the art community and also to hear from others about how their contribution has help the community.
After the gala, I headed over the The Arnold party in the round room, for more music and entertainment from various artists, including Saidah Baba Talibah, who had a really neat musical style. I managed to capture her and her band on stage in my sketches. The band and DJ were good too, people were dancing and having a blast. Part of the entertainment also included a live art show, where an artist was painting a mural that would light up as her work progress. That was really neat. 
I also had fun drawing some of the 1920's inspired outfits I managed to capture. The attention to detail was really inspiring, from the haircut, to the hair accessories, and outfits. I wish I would have been able to do more, but people move a lot at a party! 
I really like this venue and took the time before leaving to do a quick sketch of the waiting area near the washrooms. I would love to come back and do more detailed architecture drawings of the space. It would be a great place to do some urban sketching with the Toronto Urban Sketchers group

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