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Artist Trading Card Sessions

Artist trading cards.On the last Saturday of every month, you could be taking part in Artist Trading Card (ATC) Sessions.

The New Gallery in Calgary has become Alberta's central point for the ATC phenomenon. Originating in Zurich, Switzerland, ATCs were started and promoted by artists M. Varci Stirnemann and Cat Schick. They consist of baseball/hockey-sized cards that have been manipulated into miniature works of art.

Illustrated artist trading card from France.Visual styles for ATCs run the gamut and range from collages to paintings to rubber-stamped images. A humorous streak in content can often be found. Perhaps it is this affable underbelly that first attracted artist and educator Don Mabie, also known as Calgary's beloved Chuck Stake, to ATC activities in Europe. After meeting with ATC creators, he decided to import the idea back to his hometown in 1997.

Artist trading card from Switzerland.That same year, The New Gallery, held its first trading session, and ever since, they have been taking place every month. On September 28, 2002, a fifth year anniversary session was held.

Simply illustrated German artist trading card.Attendance for the monthly meetings averages about 70 to 75 people raging from six to 60 years old. Newcomers are always welcome, and are introduced to ATC culture by the core group of 30 to 35 regular attendees.

Formal art training is not necessary for ATC participation. Card creators come from a range of backgrounds; some of them are professional artists or art educators, while others are simply curious and fascinated individuals with little to no experience in the art world. The binding tie for them is the little art pieces they create.

Canadian artist trading card.Monthly sessions provide an incentive for the regular production of cards. They also provide the thrust for exhibition and trading. Inherent in the tradition of ATC culture is free swapping versus the selling of artwork. Illustrated artist trading card from Canada.If a card is coveted, it can be exchanged for a piece that another participant is willing to trade.

With openness and a refreshing variety of participants, the ATC sessions that people partake in every month will continue to be an artistic and social occasion open to all.

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