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Thursday, 25 April 2019 07:39 pm

The Toi Two Hundy, affordable art for every day people

Dec 17th, 2015 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

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Residents work on display at the Toi Poneke Gallery, work by Sam Beetham right.

TOI Two Hundy is a new twist on the Toi Poneke annual resident artists’ exhibition which opened this week.

Every painting on display is priced at a maximum of $200, allowing 30 local artists to show off their talent at affordable prices.

Gallery co-organiser David Brown put emphasis on the affordability and equality of the exhibition.

“This year we tried to have the concept of making it affordable and capping the price at $200.”

Every artist gets the same amount of space, he says, pointing out the yellow squares marked on the gallery wall within which each artist could display their work.

Emerging artist Sam Beetham has already sold some of his paintings on display and thinks the event is positive for both artists and buyers.

“It’s a good idea to have shows like this one.”

He felt that art should be “obtainable for the masses, not just for the well-heeled”.

He only returned to painting a few years ago, after a break of over 20 years.

Recently he gained a huge following for his work, after his wife posted photos of his paintings on Reddit, an online social media forum.

The feedback was overwhelmingly positive and he received millions of likes on his pictures.

Juggling his budding artistic career with being a stay-at-home dad he has been putting in a lot of work during the weekends and appreciates the studio space for the quiet time to work on his art.

Between the gallery displays and his social media presence he was positive about the future.

“I think the prices will go up. Well, I hope.”

He credited his wife Jayce Beetham for his success, saying he wouldn’t be here without her support.

Asked to discuss his paintings, Sam preferred to keep an air of mystery around his work. “An artist does not talk about the art.”

The Able Smith St Gallery has been running the resident exhibition annually for the past six years, but this is the first time the maximum price has been set on the exhibits.

Entry to the exhibition is free and the artists were only charged a $20 fee to cover catering costs for the opening night.

The gallery held a similar event last night, the opening of the ‘Buy Enjoy’ exhibition.

Every work of art on display at Buy Enjoy was priced at $125 and Mr Brown said the pieces tended to sell quickly.

The Toi Two Hundy will be on display at 61-69 Abel-Smith street till  December 22 from 10am till 4pm each day.

Toi Pōneke Arts Centre and gallery is a creative space provided by the Wellington City Council for artists, arts businesses and arts organisations to meet, work, rehearse and exhibit in the heart of the city.

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Some of Sam Beetham’s earlier work in his studio at Toi Poneke.

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