2017 Art Fiddles & Cellos

A few short years ago our dear friend (and dedicated Board Member), Leslie Gotfrit, dreamed up a fundraising initiative that has since become a favourite with musicians and artists alike.  Old, unplayable violins are donated by violin shops in Calgary and are given new life by local artists who transform them into beautiful pieces of art.  These amazing Art Fiddles are displayed at various events in and around Calgary and are auctioned off each spring at the Calgary Fiddlers annual Sweet on Fiddlin' show.  All funds raised from this initiative go towards enhancing the Calgary Fiddlers Association's educational programs, the Legacy Fund and Tour Fund.

Special thanks to Nicole Ely-Joshi for the beautiful Fiddle/Cello Art photos!

Final Journey (Cello)

Artist:   KAREN BIKO

Inspiration for this piece:  Final Journey is the story of a Cello and it’s life through many hands.  Coming from the Calgary School Board, Final Journey would have experienced all the emotion and turmoil involved in the process of a child learning to play which the artist has tried to interpret through her painting.  You can see the tears of frustration when things just don’t seem to work represented by the darker unclear colours through to elation at getting it right shown with brighter defined areas.

Being held by many children, Final Journey had many knocks and scars, traveled to many musical destinations, and experienced different forms of music.  This Cello’s Final Journey depicts the music in a map-like style.  Small reveals of the beautiful wood under its final performance help anchor the instrument back to it’s original history.

Artist Bio:  Karen Biko loves colour and loves expressing movement through her paintings. Each one creates itself on the paper and canvas. Never realizing what the final outcome will be until the last brush stroke, or more likely in my case dot, signifies the complete work.
At an exhibition, someone came by one day and sneered at her that she had no “formal training”. But her experimentation and appetite to learn have brought her further than she ever thought possible. She’s always looking to try something new, or figuring out a new touch that will add to the composition. She doesn’t have formal training, but she is having a lifetime of inspiration.



Let Your Arc Flow (Cello)


Inspiration for this piece:  Let Your Arc Flow collection is a relatively new concept that Amanda finds satisfying to her sense of adventure. One that forces her intuition and imagination to work simultaneously, taking her to a place where she believes all artists find their true selves and generate their most fulfilling works of art.

Beyond most individuals’ realm of consciousness, both positive and negative energies are flowing, influencing our day to day lives. One could say this energy scars us. These "scars" and their erratic paths can be visualized through Amanda’s work. It’s our choice to embrace either positive or negative energy, remembering, our energy vibrations not only affect us individually but also collectively!

Artist Bio:  Born and raised in northern Canada, Amanda Holmes has been greatly influenced and intrigued by a vast and powerful landscape - one with simple horizon lines and the compelling cast that lie above and below. She is inspired by artists who capture the simple lines of nature. Two who come to mind are Clemence Wescoupe and Robbie Craig. 

Working as a carpenter for a decade now, utilizing wood as her base medium only seemed a natural inception. Infusing this medium with the effects of high voltage electricity has provided such a dramatic, challenging and ever changing canvas for her to work with.



The Arrangement of Sound (Fiddle)


Inspiration for this piece:  Great innovators use artistic methods to solve problems. The most famous example is, of course, Einstein. He was quoted saying that when scientific method failed him, he would solve his problems musically. He would lock himself in his study, and play his violin for hours. Most don't know that he was a gifted violinist and pianist. Einstein was literally tapping in to the harmonic rhythms and vibrations of the universe; plucking the notes and tones that would ultimately allow him to write the theory of relativity from the tactile vibrations at his fingertips.  The Arrangement of Sound is a new work exploring the deconstruction of formal music and its transformation to sculpture. A tired instrument lives on as a tangible embodiment of the rhythms and abstract musical structures it once played as a sculptural homage to the vibrations and tones of the universe. 

Artist Bio:  Native Calgarian Kirk Dunkley was inspired to pursue his passion for art at a very early age. He began his artistic journey under the guidance of his grandmother, submitting a first-place-winning drawing at the age of 8 to his first community art contest. It was only after his parent's advice to “pursue your passion” that he took his talents into serious consideration and applied to the fine art program at the University of Calgary. After studying art, product design and fabrication that culminated in the completion of a Master's Degree in contemporary sculpture, installation and design, Dunkley went on to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams founding his creative practice Sigma Six Design Corporation. To date, Dunkley has created sculpture for Canadian Universities, private collectors and even NASA. Dunkley lives and operates his business in Airdrie with his wife, four month old daughter and beloved dog "Doug" by his side.



Music Moves Me (Fiddle)


Inspiration for this piece:  The dance of Koi as it moves through the water as if in response to a favorite melody or rhythm inspired this piece.

Artist Bio:  Anica Saxinger, a life-long artist, has a University background in science, art and design.  She has worked with various media throughout the years, exploring what each offers to her perspective.  Lead, water color, acrylics and mixed media have all been favorites, each providing a strength and appeal depending on the subject matter.  Nature has been an inspiration in much of her work, especially the macro details like the bark of a tree or the guarded gaze of a forest dweller.



Go Tell It On The Mountain (Fiddle)


Inspiration for this piece: I was inspired to paint the beautiful mountain of Alberta from day to night.

Artist Bio:  Canadian artist Erin Brekke Conn is most well-known for her stunning paintings of wildlife and unique landscapes.  Conn's art may take on an otherworldly appearance or may even embody a distinctive, almost human personality.  There is a great variety of ways that she explores the nature motif, varying the depth of field, texture and palette.  Most paintings are hard-edged graphic representations with angular precision, while others project feelings of movement as if the paintings are alive with spirit.  Her most dazzling works employ the application of pointillism, where thousands upon thousands of raised dots adorn the canvas.  "My art captures all the beauty nature embodies, with a funky twist," she states.  Conn's work has been featured in popular magazines, Fortis Alberta art wraps, ICE transportation passes and she has completed hundreds of commissioned pieces in addition to exhibiting in Canada, Miami and New York.  She lives and works in Airdrie, AB.  



Check out past Fiddle Art!