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