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The Eastside Culture Crawl—the city’s annual and most popular spree of studio-hopping, deal-making, and art-staring—began in 1997 when a few hundred bohemians toured 45 studios. Today, more than 10,000 will visit, wander, ooh, and pshaw over the work of more than 300 artists. Like the Fringe Festival, the Crawl is something of a crapshoot. For every worthwhile discovery, there’s somebody else branding scraps of leather with tribal designs. We’ve scoured the catalogues, though, to come up with five must-hit studios:
Andrea Taylor (318-1000 Parker St.) produces dream-like portraits that are at once beautiful enough to grace any home and abstract enough to escape being called “decorative.” Ask to see her gorgeous letterpress books.
Greg Geipel (637 E. Georgia St.), a photographer for this magazine, shoots meditative scenes from the borders of urbanity. His series depicting quaintly outmoded corner stores deserves to be collected.
Heyday Design (975 Vernon Dr.) creates contemporary porcelain works recalling historical artifacts. For example: pristine white vases modelled from antique Mason jars. Undeniably attractive stuff.
Eve Leader (340-1000 Parker St.) is a veteran of the local scene; her canvases are assemblages of soulful (or nightmarish) figures—shadowy and naked, in oil paint and graphite.
Richard Tetrault (800 Keefer St.) may be the city’s most loved muralist. His colourful, community-minded work graces rec centres, housing co-ops, and schools. Visit his studio to check out his extensive printmaking practice.