Friends of Walnut Studio Artists

$29,441 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 458 people in 4 months
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Created May 21, 2018
In the early morning of May 19, 2018, my sister's art studio, Walnut studios, nestled between Niagara street and Walnut Ave in Toronto experienced a devastating fire.

Founded in 2008, Walnut Studios is a community of 45 artists in a large warehouse studio in Toronto's King West Village. It is home to Painters, Sculptors, Fashion Designers, Jewellery Makers, Photographers, and Installation Artists.

The devastating fire in the north end of the studio, affected 22 artists including my sister who lost not only their artwork but also all her art supplies.
Hundreds of hours of artists work along with finished commissions were destroyed through a combination of fire, smoke and water damage.

The summer is an extremely important time of year for artists with upcoming outdoor art shows. At the time of the fire, the Walnut Studio artists were putting finishing touches on their pieces for their upcoming summer exhibitions.

The loss of both their work and their supplies will make it impossible for many of them to participate in many of the shows this season.

As the friends, family and community of those artists affected by the Walnut studio fire, let's give back to our creative community during their time of great loss. We will distribute this money so that they can purchase new equipment and art supplies to get making again.  This money will also go towards helping these artists relocate temporarily while the major repairs are being completed on their Walnut studio spaces.

Fundraising efforts and community gatherings for Walnut Studios as a whole and for artists who lost work due to smoke damage in the South Studio will be forthcoming. Watch Walnut Studios social media for updates as they move through managing this immense loss.  Let's help rebuild an important part of Toronto's independent artist community!

Here are some of the north studio artists affected by this tragic fire:

Anand Jaggernauth


Anand was born and raised on the island of Trinidad, and after graduating from the University of Western Ontario he enjoyed a decade long career in the oil and gas industry as a Geophysicist. As a Geophysicist, he sees the canvas as the first layer in the Earth’s subsurface as he brings the oils to life, creating and integrating textures - he builds depth, fluidity and movement bringing harmony into his pieces. He thoroughly enjoys working directly with his clients and sharing more about his process, and his voice as an artist.

Chak Man Chow


“I learned my jewelry making techniques at George Brown College and Jewel Envy in 2007. I had workplace set up with Walnut Studio in 2009. I use sterling silver in my work .My jewelry is simple but I like to create happy accident in my work. It has unpredicted result. My jewelry is inspired by many organic objects. My goal is to create more jewelry from the techniques I learned.”

Claire M. Tallarico


Claire M Tallarico  documents what she grows, cooks and forages through mono printing, abstract painting and collage. She work with acrylics,  plants, food, paper and found objects. Claire is the founder and co facilitator of Alchemy, an international artists residency exploring the intersection between culinary and artistic practices in community settings. Sharing time and space with others to create art and food, particularly in community settings,  enables her to consider and experiment with an ever expanding array of ideas, objects and mediums.

Cora Endean


Cora is a jewellery designer and goldsmith living and working in Toronto at Walnut Studios.  Hailing from Kapuskasing, Ontario, Cora moved to Toronto at 17 and found inspiration in the city. After studying Jewellery Arts at George Brown College, Cora found a home at Walnut Studios creating one-of a kind designs and custom pieces.  Focused on found objects, clean lines, and simple designs, she draws inspiration from the city on a large scale – the juxtaposition of nature and industry, as well a smaller scale, finding a vision in fragments of power lines, or the corner of a building.

Jamie MacRae


Jamie MacRae is a Toronto based artist with a background in design. His artwork consists of photography and acrylic paint, layered beneath resin. By altering his original digital photographic images, he adds to the richness of the urban environment he has captured through the camera lens. Combining his altered photo images with acrylic paint, he plays with the juxtaposition of abstraction and urbanity. His images capture the energy of the city he presently calls home.

Johana Cordero


Loom is a small weaving studio located in Toronto and run by Johana Cordero, a textile and fashion artist. It has been her long time dream to open a textile studio and create a community of like minded folks. Loom is her personal studio space where she experiments with her own projects and creates custom work. In this space she also offers a variety of classes and workshops for weaving and textile enthusiasts and those who are looking to learn for the first time.

Kathryn Bondy


Kathryn Bondy is a botanical artist and florist, working in Toronto. She creates paper flowers, fruit, plants and fauna under the name Golden Age Botanicals. Her lifelike paper pieces are inspired by the strange beauty of classic still life painting, and capture the wonder of nature in vivid detail.

Katrina Schaman


My sister, Katrina Schaman is an incredibly talented and hard working artist who does beautiful mixed media paintings and she is also an amazingly thoughtful and loving person. She is constantly working to grow as she continues to create beautiful pieces for others to enjoy. She also uses her art to give back to her community; volunteering her skills and her time to teach children who are living in the shelter system about the beauty of creating through art.

Kristen Stephen


Kristen Stephen’s love of art began in Niagara on the Lake in her mother’s fine art gallery. After pursuing her art history degree at Brock University, her journey brought her to Toronto. She then went on to attend OCADU in the Fine Arts programme focusing in the painting and drawing programme. Her artistic focus is abstract painting. She lives in Cabbagetown with her two energetic children, partner and two playful dogs.

Morgan Sheardown


Morgan Sheardown was born and raised in downtown Toronto. He graduated from OCAD University with a degree in Graphic Design. Morgan's body of work entitled "Raining Cows”, expresses the inspiration he gets from rain, colour and his love of cows. He uses rain as a filter to distort and create different levels of abstraction. The cows are graphic, however, his work is painted on layers to the feeling of rain.

Parisa Razeghi


Painting for Parisa is an unfolding, the empty canvas an arena of struggle. She begins with a concept, really a feeling, a mood - calm, aggressive, crazy. And then she summons all her weapons of mass creation-drawing, colour, fleeting associations, long-lost memories - to realize the feeling/image in paint. She finds that she is drawn to certain motifs -the spiral, the curve, flower petals. Though these are archetypes of the culture of her native Iran, they also transcend ethnic particularism. The more visceral the painting, the more potentially universal its appeal.

Rob Croxford


Rob is a full time artist and lives in east Toronto, in Canada. In the last decade he has shown in over 120 juried  & solo exhibitions and has completed almost 1200 works of art. Rob has participated in many Canadian art fairs as well as showing in galleries in Kelowna BC and in the USA. He is featured in ‘The Hogtown Project’ coffee table book, and is represented in the City of Toronto’s permanent Art Collection. He has been commissioned by TV series’ and has been profiled in a number of Canadian publications. Rob's acrylic paintings are intentionally upbeat and often quite silly. His vintage-inspired work is instantly identifiable! It has a clever approach to pop culture that often merges political topics within whimsical compositions. Rob is a professional artist and smarty-pants and is always looking for new ways to challenge and amuse!

Ursula Mcdonnell


Ursula McDonnell is a Toronto Born artist. As a child Ursula was drawing colourful compositions similar to the patterns she would see in stain glass windows.  As Ursula began to develop her artistic style she was inspired by the work of Gustave Klimt and Picasso. This inspired Ursula to create colourful abstracts with bold blocks of colour using found objects and  mixed media. In 2008 Ursula joined Walnut studios and has since grown leaps and bounds as an artist. She has shown in many galleries and cafes as well as art fairs in the city.
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Thank you so much to everyone who donated to this fund for the Walnut Studios North side artists! They are so appreciative of each and every one of your donations.

Since this money is not going to a single person or organization and instead it is being divided amongst a group of people we need to choose beneficiary from Walnut Studios to hold the funds for a short time so it can be transferred out to all the other artists. The artists have agreed on how the funds will be divided and that my sister, Katrina Schaman will be the beneficiary and will carry out the distribution of funds.

Thank you again for all your support and generosity!
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This support has been so awesome! Here is another update from the Walnut artists:

“Again we are overwhelmed with this support and kindness - it is truly wonderful to see the community rallying around us in this way!

Our artists have spent years and in some cases decades collecting the tools, equipment, supplies and materials that were all lost in a matter of hours. Aside from painters we also have weavers, woodworkers, jewelry makers and fashion designers - each with a unique set of materials and tools that they work with. Without these tools our artists can’t move forward and get back to creating the amazing artwork that adds so much to our wonderful city.

With over a hundred thousand dollars in lost supplies and tools coupled with the fact that each artist will need to be relocated we have decided to increase our goal again in hopes that every artist might get some compensation for even just a fraction of what was lost.

Thank you again for your ongoing support during this difficult time!“
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The Walnut Artists have asked me to share an update with you after the amazing support they’ve experienced so far! Thank you!

“We want to thank everyone for all the amazing love and support - we are overwhelmed with everyone’s kindness!

We could never have anticipated how much our community would rally together to support us during this difficult time. We set a low goal initially not knowing what to expect but with artist supply / material losses of over $100000 and potential artwork losses of well over $500000 we have decided to increase our goal. As insuring a shared workspace and artwork are very difficult and expensive most of our artists were uninsured and will not be reimbursed for any of our losses so these donations are especially meaningful to us!

There aren’t even enough words to tell you all how grateful we are for this wonderful community and everything you have given us!”
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$29,441 of $30,000 goal

Raised by 458 people in 4 months
No Longer Accepting Donations
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Created May 21, 2018
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