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“My aims – what they are – are not perhaps high. I do not think of my art works – as it seems is the fashion nowadays – as having a socially significant message – unless [it is] in trying to tell in my work, of beauty I have felt or observed, and so to bring it to the attention of others, [so it] does good to mankind and has some social value. If what I have said in my art, or have fostered in my teaching, carries into the world a sense of greater happiness and beauty in my day, then all my aims will be gratified.”
Violet Gillett

Opening and Book Launch

Saturday, October 8, 2-4 pm at the Gallery

Violet A. Gillett, Painting With Words
Artist, Author and Educator

Author JoAnne Rivers, in collaboration with all the descendants of Violet Gillett, has penned a life story
about this important, multi-talented Maritimer that will kindle a glorious and lasting impression for everyone.
“A number of accolades, including becoming a Member of the Order of Canada in 1976, reflects the great esteem in
which both she and her work were held over the course of an active, influential, and distinguished career. Ultimately, Vi Gillett’s hard work and quiet determination fundamentally reshaped art in New Brunswick; a remarkable
accomplishment and enduring legacy.”

Peter J. Larocque Art Curator, New Brunswick Museum

As the founding director of Fine Art at the Saint John Vocational School, Gillett gave influential guidance to young Fred Ross and many others. With Walter Abell and Miller Brittain she was a pivotal force in the Maritime Push. Upon
retirement Violet Gillett returned to her family home in Perth-Andover, New Brunswick where, with her sister Beatrice Rivers they developed a highly successful arts and crafts business catering to visitors from across Canada and the United States. Little has been written about this East Coast renaissance artist. “Painting With Words” tells the inspirational story, from her childhood memories arriving at Market Slip in Saint John in 1909, her early employment with Banting and Best at the time of their insulin discovery, through the many, and variety of artworks she created – even after losing her sight. By combining personal correspondence with published stories from the Atlantic Advocate and a generous collection of images, Painting With Words chronicles a life well lived. For those who know Violet Gillett’s work, this book will enhance their appreciation of her life’s many accomplishments. For those meeting her for the first time, many delightful and surprising encounters await within this book’s covers. JoAnne Rivers


October 8, 2022
November 12, 2022
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