I had lunch the other day with a Toronto artist friend, David Arathoon, and his excitement for the upcoming launch of his Spring show permeated the conversation. When I arrived he was busy working on finishing and arranging new works for his upcoming exhibition, Islands in the Sun on May 23rd and 24th. Some so new, he left them to dry while we had lunch.
David was born in Calcutta, India and immigrated to Canada via England when he was five. He is a graduate of Ontario College of Art and Humber College. It’s obvious that colour is important to him, not just from his signature paintings of masses of flowers, but his conversation is just as colourful zigzagging from travel to the importance of colour and light to the symbolism of colour in his works.
When I commented that he is so known for his flowers, he was quick to remind me that he also does landscapes and seascapes. “I paint nature. All of nature is alive with colour.”
I also know David Arathoon from his tireless volunteer and fundraising efforts in various Toronto communities, like the YMCA Positive Living program for people with special needs and Casey House Hospice. He conceptualized a stellar annual event called Message in a Bottle for Casey House. Working with Nancy Moyen, a bottle designer, each attendee received a beautiful gift-wrapped hand-blown Mexican glass bottle which carried various messages from disparate celebrities far and wide: Elton John, Sting (who hand wrote-out his song), Janet Leigh, Elizabeth Taylor, Cher, Ron Howard, Barbara Eden, Ali McGraw, Hugh Hefner, Prince Albert of Monaco, Mario Andretti, Margaret Atwood, Barbara Hall and Karen Kain. Many of the messages were accompanied by hand-drawn cartoons, lyrics, and even gold jewelry. The conversation quickly turned to private stories about how some of the messages were solicited in Michael Carlevale’s restaurant Prego during the Toronto International Film Festival. Not only were those events fun, everyone was always asking “Who did you get?”, but they raised over $1 million for Casey House’s Hospice Care programs over several years.
David Arathoon’s works are in many private and corporate collections, including historic inns, Toronto Board of Trade, Bell Canada, Sunnybrook Hospital, Canadian Tire Corp., and many well-known Canadian galleries. David has also been recognized with the Heroes Award from the Metropolitan Community Church for his community efforts, which was presented by the late June Callwood.
Add some colour to your life and treat yourself to a visit to his Spring launch on May 23rd and 24th at 23 Spruce Street, Toronto, ON M5A 2H8. In the event you can’t make it, I know he always makes himself available by appointment. http://www.davidarathoonstudio.com
– Chip Barkel, Toronto Real Estate. Extraordinary Service. Top Results.