The definition of Bohemian, when googled, comes up as ‘unconventional, nonconformist, unorthodox, avant-garde, offbeat, off-center, irregular, original, alternative, experimental, artistic, idiosyncratic, eccentric, arty, arty-farty, way-out, off the wall, oddball.’ These are all descriptions that Katherine Pickering, owner and curator of the new Paris Bohemian Gallery doesnt mind at all. In fact, her intent with opening this cool new space was to offer a venue for local creatives to embrace exactly that definition.
Katherine has lived in Paris for 20 years – moving here from Kitchener, to where her husband’s family lives, and raise her own family. Of her love for Paris, she says “it feels like we’re raising kids in a Norman Rockwell painting – everything is so safe here”. Having worked in many creative industries, including culinary arts and natural healing, Katherine came to open this gallery as a result of the natural flow of her life. Surrounded by the local creativity, she wanted to be compliment what already exists in the thriving art scene of the town. She is both an artist and an art lover and opening this space seemed like a natural progression for her life.
The Paris Bohemian Gallery, photo: Dean Ellis
The incredible energy she felt at the space at 27 William St. is evident to all that enter – starting with the blue door in the red brick building and working its way in to the wooden floors, fireplace and cozy desk area at the back. Everywhere you look, there is beautiful art created by local artists, in a space that was designed and renovated to allow the best viewing of the art on the walls.
Opening night, March 1. Photo: Dean Ellis
Having opened its doors on March 1 to a turnout that left little room to move, the gallery has already experienced a successful few weeks, with several sales and a great buzz going around.
When asked about future plans, Katherine’s eyes drift into the future and she begins to list many aspirations for the space including workshops, tastings (showcasing local wineries and distilleries), lectures, meditation sessions, small business meetings, and reaching out to high schools to facilitate art projects for aspiring artists – but for now the focus is to ride the wave and carry on after a successful beginning.
Work by Rebecca Martin-Warr (right) and Vadim Boldireff (left)
The Paris Bohemian Gallery is open 5 days a week (Sunday 12 – 6, Wednesday 12 – 6, Thursday to Saturday 12-7, Closed Monday and Tuesday).
Fiber art by Jennifer Budd
Opening night collage by Dean Ellis