The Art of Giv­ing

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Vic­to­ria Vanier, Stanstead

It was a for­tu­nate day for the CAB RH Rediker when, four­teen years ago, Pauline Ler­oux, a suc­cess­ful artist who also worked in the bank­ing busi­ness, moved to the nearby mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Og­den. Want­ing to con­trib­ute to her new com--

mu­nity’s Christ­mas Bas­ket cam­paign the first year that she and her hus­band, An­dré Dufresne, moved there, Pauline brought to­gether her artis­tic tal­ent, her fi­nan­cial ex­per­tise and her gen­er­ous spirit and came up with the idea of raf­fling off one of her oil paint­ings to raise money for the lo­cal vol­un­teer cen­ter.

“and I wanted to help peo­ple who are less

my way of con­tribut­ing,” said Pauline in an in­ter­view that took place at her home

The rest, as they say, is lo­cal his­tory. Ev­ery Novem­ber since 1997, Mrs. Ler­oux has brought one of her beau­ti­ful oil paint­ings, al­ways mas­ter­fully framed, to the CIBC bank in the Beebe sec­tor where it is dis­played and where the raf­fle tick­ets are en­thu­si­as­ti­cally sold by the bank’s em­ploy­ees. “The CIBC bank in Beebe is the only place where you can buy the raf­fle tick­ets for the paint­ing. They are very kind and very mo­ti­vated to sell the raf­fle tick­ets,” com­mented Mrs. Ler­oux. “We al­ways have the ob­jec­tive of try­ing to raise $1,500 with the sell­ing of the raf­fle tick­ets. Some­times it’s been less and some­times we’ve sur­passed that num­ber. The most we ever raised was around $2000,” she added.

With an av­er­age of roughly $1,200 raised each year from the paint­ing raf­fle, this sea­son’s pro­ceeds will prob­a­bly push the to­tal amount raised over the years close to the $20,000 mark! And some peo­ple still ques­tion whether one per­son can make a dif­fer­ence!

Of course the main rea­son the raf­fle tick­ets sell so well is be­cause of the qual­ity of Pauline’s work. A self-taught artist who has been paint­ing for about thirty years, she has taken part in pres­ti­gious group exhibitions, solo exhibitions and exhibitions with her hus­band who also paints. She was awarded the Premier prix du pub­lic at the 2003 ex­po­si­tion at the former Les Tre­sors de la Grange, in Ma­gog. Her work has been fea­tured in two edi­tions of the Que­bec mag­a­zine L’art a L’oeil and can also be found in pri­vate col­lec­tions in Canada, the United States and France.

With a ten­dency to­wards both ‘re­al­ism’ and ‘im­pres­sion­ism’ in her work, Pauline’s sub­jects in­clude flow­ers, pas­toral scenes and an­i­mals. Hang­ing around her home, min­gling in with works done by her hus­band An­dré, were sev­eral im­pres­sive can­vasses, many of them exquisitely cap­tur­ing the beauty and at­mos­phere of the Town­ships coun­try­side, a fa­vorite sub­ject which inspires her.

The beau­ti­ful paint­ing that is be­ing raf­fled off this year is a scene from the re­gion. “It’s a real chalet that I vis­ited in the Og­den area. It’s called ‘Refuge’. I have a pho­to­graphic mem­ory so when I see a scene that I like, I can go back home and paint it,” ex­plained Mrs. Ler­oux.

Born in East An­gus, Pauline and An­dré lived in Sher­brooke for many years, work­ing and rais­ing chil­dren, be­fore re­tir­ing and mov­ing to the ‘coun­try’. They found the per­fect spot for two artists in Og­den: one with a cap­ti­vat­ing view of the moun­tains along Lake Mem­phrem­a­gog. An­dré built a house on the prop­erty and, more re­cently, an artist stu­dio, while Pauline has cre­ated huge flower gar­dens to sat­isfy her “pas­sion for flow­ers”.

“When I took my pre- re­tire­ment, I be­gan to put all my en­ergy into paint­ing. At first I had no idea what peo­ple here would like! All my paint­ings re­sem­ble this area, beau­ti­ful Lake Mem­phrem­a­gog, the moun­tains too are beau­ti­ful. I get in­spired so much around here – it makes it very easy to paint,” said Pauline.

If you’d like a chance to win the lovely, framed oil paint­ing en­ti­tled “Refuge”, a time­less, quin­tes­sen­tial Town­ships pas­toral that will add grace to any wall, just head over to the CIBC in the Beebe sec­tor, un­til De­cem­ber 21st, dur­ing bank­ing hours. The em­ploy­ees there will be more than happy to sell you a raf­fle ticket or two at $5 each or three for $10. The draw­ing of the win­ning raf­fle ticket will be done on De­cem­ber 22nd, just in time for Christ­mas gift-giv­ing.

Photo Vic­to­ria Vanier

Pauline Ler­oux poses at the CIBC, in the Beebe sec­tor, with this year’s paint­ing which is be­ing raf­fled off to raise money for CAB RH Rediker’s Christ­mas Bas­ket Cam­paign.

Photo Vic­to­ria Vanier

Pauline Ler­oux is sur­rounded by the beauty of the Town­ships at her home in Og­den.

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