The History of the Contemporary Art Society
Our group began when two friends, Pauline Manning and Jill Field
got together after the Nova Scotia Society of Artists disbanded and
to start their own group in March of 1973. About 25 people showed up,
of them established artists. Pauline became the first president, Jill
first treasurer and Tom Bauld agreed to help make up an official
with a set of rules about how the society should be run.
One important factor was that each member be an active and
artist; no matter what their skill level. The main purpose of the group
to bring the artists together and provide stimulating contact to
and encourage each other to develop their creative abilities. At each
meeting they strived to accomplish this endeavour by various means,
each member painting their own interpretation of the same subject
then showing and discussing their work, watching films or working to
and even live dance rehearsals.
Our first annual show was held in September 1974 at the School of
Architecture on Spring Garden Road and it opened with some very
reviews in the local papers. There was a wide range of mediums, styles
subject matter as well as different degrees of skill/
What does it take to keep such a group going and thriving for 30 years?
the years there have been many shifts varying core members and changing
views; however, the basic concept along with the support of the
community has always remained strong throughout. As with any society,
member's contribution has been and continues to be critical and
creating as well as influencing the outcome of the group's future. With
a solid beginning, thanks to members such as Pauline (who sadly passed
in 1975), Jill, Tom and the many other artists who first supported the
society, it was off to a fabulous start. Their enthusiasm and
put so much energy into the society has inspired those who have
take up the society's principles and incite one another to continuously
strive for the next level in their creative endeavours.
As we all know, (or I believe we should) some of the best artists in
world reside in Nova Scotia and many of those, over the years, have
from the Contemporary Art Society "family." They have all contributed
instilled their version of "art" within the society as well as having
out throughout the artistic community in Nova Scotia and beyond. The
artists, too numerous to mention, should be congratulated and take
their contribution to the society and to the community as a whole.
The Contemporary Art Society celebrated its 30 year birthday in 2004.