What makes a Fine Art Appraiser qualified? August 19 2023

Wall Fiction works with qualified professionals including a Fine Art Appraiser in Toronto.

1. Qualified appraisers work to the methodology, rules and standards set out by the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP). These standards are recognized internationally and appraiser qualifications must be updated every two years.
2. Education and experience are required. Look for an appraiser who is a current member of a recognized appraisal organization such as the International Society of Appraisers (ISA). As an accredited member of the ISA, Kelly Juhasz had to provide proof of her higher education and experience in her specialty areas of fine art and archives.
3. Appraisers must complete a minimum of seventy-five hours of continuing professional development and perform over seven hundred hours of appraisal-related services every five years. As an ISA member, Kelly Juhasz complies with report-writing standards and a code of ethics. 

Contact Fine Art Appraisal and Services to talk to a qualified appraiser in Toronto, Canada. 


Would you buy art online? February 22 2023

Although millennials and new art buyers have shifted buying in the art market to online and are making headway in bridging the generation gap in the art world, the entire buyer-base for fine art has moved right along with them.

With the change brought about from the pandemic, buyers are not only more confident in purchasing works online but did so in record high numbers. The Hiscox Online Trade Report 2021 stated that consumer hesitancy about buying online had drastically decreased and that online-only auctions increased. Also, important to note was that the average price per purchase increased from $8,500 to $24,000 at fine art auction houses.

According to’s Contemporary Art Market Report 2021, 90% of the contemporary art sold at auction was under $20,000.[1] Other online platforms and online-only galleries are also growing and benefiting from the overall increased level of buyer confidence.

The question that many new and established art buyers are now asking is how to narrow down where to buy. Major concerns for the online art market include the overwhelming abundance of art-market data coupled with finding art that meets the same quality that one finds from reputable galleries or from fine art dealers.


At Wall Fiction, we work hard to build trust within the art market by sharing our knowledge, partnering with reputable galleries, showing established artists’ work, and providing professional descriptions and images. As an online-only consignment gallery, word of mouth and online reviews and experiences from our consignors and collectors are key to our success. We aim to ensure a smooth and professional experience when buying art online where the process doesn’t always allow for in-person viewing.

 In reading art market trends for online buying, Wall Fiction satisfies the top concerns on people’s mind and builds trusts with collectors and consignors. 


When buying online look for these four things:

  1. Knowledge Sharing
  2. Artist Information and Formal Descriptions
  3. Price Transparency
  4. Seamless Customer Service


  1. Knowledge Sharing – Educating Our Buyers and Consignors 

Wall Fiction carries extensive knowledge of the Canadian and International art market and the artists that trade within the various fine art markets. Sharing that knowledge by posting articles and art buying tips helps educate our buyers and consignors. Working in the industry and holding memberships in reputable associations ensures our buyers and consignors receive current market information and that our standards remain high.

Wall Fiction will often feature rediscovered artists whose names are not currently in the news but who offer solid buying opportunities for engaging quality pieces are art at affordable price points. 

For the new collector, we offer an unpretentious and affordable entrance into art collecting. By learning and browsing curated art online without the pressure of feeling like you need to say the right things, you can start building a collection at your leisure. We’ve done the preliminary work for you. 

For the seasoned collector, we provide an opportunity for both buying and selling. If after years of collecting and reshaping your preferences and tastes you find that you want a change, we can sell your work on consignment.



  1. Artist Information – Empowering Our Collectors

Wall Fiction provides a proper description of the artwork and the necessary photographs to ensure buyers have what they need to make an informed decision. We understand context is important: knowing about the artist’s history and career, the inspiration of the work or stories attached can spark connections.

 In addition to biographical information, Wall Fiction takes possession of all the artwork we list for sale from our consignors to inspect it thoroughly and verify its condition. We realize that our buyers are relying solely upon our expertise.

Wall Fiction takes in artwork from consignors all year round and keeps our inventory of fine artworks fresh and exciting. All too often artwork posted on gallery sites or online art platforms is stale and out of date. The pieces are no longer available, the price is not stated, inquiries go unanswered, or the artwork information is incomplete. On Wall Fiction, every listing you see on our site is current and professionally described to fine art industry standards.

Every piece of art comes with a story. We make every attempt to investigate provenance – the history of ownership of the artwork – as well as the interesting stories they tell – be it a story about the artist, the subject matter or how Wall Fiction came to it.

In addition to the stories associated with each piece, we also believe that original art sparks ideas and conversation with those who own and display it and therefore has the ability to create new stories.



  1. Removing Barriers – Price Transparency

At Wall Fiction, we believe that seeing the price clearly stated removes barriers that have traditionally been put up by the art market. Transparency in price is a key enabler to building trust when buying online. 

Because Wall Fiction works in the secondary markets, we work with qualified appraisers and advisors to research each work of art that comes in on consignment and to accurately assess past and current sales activities. This work behind the scenes allows us to offer competitively priced works of fine art to our buyers and provides a solid return to our consignors.

Although we do not keep the prices posted at which the artworks sold, our office is always happy to share that information via email or phone; just ask. This transparency and professionalism keeps both buyers and consignors coming back.



  1. Seamless Customer Service – Sales Process and Shipping

Wall Fiction deals with clients locally and internationally on a regular basis and takes proper care in the shipping and handling of artwork. If a collector is local, we’ll let them live with the artwork for a few days to see how it fits into their environment and existing collection. If a work is purchased and the collector changes their mind, we’ll take it back in on consignment and resell it for them thus allowing them to find the right piece without losing their investment.

When you purchase fine art at Wall Fiction, we package it and ship it directly to you right away. We’ll send our buyers tracking information and updates so they know when to expect their new artwork. With some works of art, we need to work with professional shippers to build custom crates or containers and, in some cases, drive it directly to where it needs to go. We can also assist in finding a professional art installer in your region.

Our business focuses on building relationships and a common passion for art. Within the last two years, we worked with two of our collectors on a regular basis to build their collections, beginning with works at lower price points to develop their knowledge and confidence. Now, both of our clients are confident in navigating and purchasing works from fine art auctions houses and established galleries across Canada on their own while they both continue to be buyers of artwork featured on Wall Fiction.


So, whatever the story behind the artwork and how Wall Fiction came to it, Wall Fiction takes art seriously and the information we gather on each piece is as accurate as we can find. We are art professionals who bring you the experience and training expected in dealing with fine art. We feature work that we believe will not only maintain its appeal but also its value.

The word fiction was created late in the 14th century as something invented and was derived from the Latin word fictiō – a fashioning and the word fingere – something to form out of clay. To us, art is fiction – something created by an artist’s hand and imagination, and the lives of the people who acquired it, hence our name: Wall Fiction.


Contact us to ask questions. In fact, asking questions is expected and we are happy to share what we know to assist new collectors navigate what many feel is an intimidating world.


[1] Sales amounts are shown for auction sales only because auction sales are publicly published whereas private sales by galleries, online or otherwise, are not made public.



Original works of art by celebrated artist and children's book illustrator, Sami Suomalainen. January 12 2023

Perfect playful addition for children's bedroom or playroom that captures the imagination!

Sami Suomalainen is recognized as one of Canada's most gift modern artists for creative spirit.

Born in Tuupovaara, Finland, he exhibited an artistic talent at a young age, winning his first prize at the age of four from the Faber company. He immigrated to Canada in the mid 1960s and settled in Toronto where he attended the Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly known as Ryerson University). After his studies, he began working as a full-time artist and illustrator. The artist's style was expressive and playful, catching the attention of well-known authors.

He is most loved for his illustrations in numerous children's books which have been sold worldwide in all major languages. His work is featured in many book illustrations, most notably with children's author Robert Munsch's Mud Puddle and The Dark.

Sami was also an accompanied musician, playing both classical and flamenco guitar, and he composed a series of instrumental guitar pieces. In addition, he was active member of Toronto's arts community and Toronto's Finnish community and volunteers in many charitable initiatives and community projects.

The artist's paintings are held in major art collections across North America, Europe and Scandinavia, and in the Art Collection of the Library and Archives Canada.

Other children's book illustrations by Sami Suomalainen include:

I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud by William Wordsworth

Marisol and the Yellow Messenger by Emilie Smith-Ayala

M. Reez's Sneezes by Curtis Parkinson

Kaarine and the Sugarbag Vest by Ima Milnes


See below available works on Wall Fiction from the collection of Sami Suomalainen: 

 Birds on the Beach, Sami Suomalainen, oil on canvas, 44.5"x 44.5"


Nocturnal Landscapes, Sami Suomalainen, oil on canvas, 26"x 44"


On The Beach, Sami Suomalainen, oil on canvas, 18" x 37"



Birds Song At Morning, Sami Suomalainen, oil on canvas, 25.5"x 44" (framed)

Successful summer exhibitions of George Paginton in Fredericton, New Brunswick August 25 2022

 We are happy to share the success of two summer exhibitions of Canadian artist George Paginton (1901 – 1988) in Fredericton, New Brunswick:

George Paginton: Painting A Nation, Beaverbrook Art Gallery
Plein-air Paintings of Eastern Canada, Gallery 78



George Paginton: Painting A Nation travelled to the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. At the same time, Fine Art Appraisal + Services organized a showing of 21 paintings of Paginton’s trips to New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Quebec with Gallery 78. (see "Fishing Village Newfoudland" here)





“He elevated the landscape to be this experience where you as a viewer are surrounded by the face of natural beauty and the splendour of the Canadian landscape… One of the first viewers said that this is one of the finest exhibitions he had ever seen at the Beaverbrook.” (See "In Atlantic Canada" here)

-John Leroux, Manager of Collections & Exhibitions, Beaverbrook Art Gallery about George Paginton: Painting A Nation on CBC’s Information Morning



Our Art Legacy Planning and Management services work with the estates or families of artists to manage and protect the integrity of the artist’s creative vision and historical influence. We provide strategic direction on collection management and maintennce, donations to cultural institutions and sales to private clients. We introduce artistic works to curators, collection managers, writers and gallerists. (See "Gloucester" here)




Contact us at to view any of the Paginton paintings in person  or if your fine art gallery may be interested in showing Paginton paintings. 

George Paginton on show in Fredericton, New Brunswick at the Beaverbrook and Gallery 78 until July 2022! March 29 2022

To celebrate the current exhibitions in Fredericton, New Brunswick – Beaverbrook Art Gallery running April 2 to July 14, 2022 and Gallery 78 running April 1 to 30, 2022 – and after two successful exhibitions at the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives and the Toronto Railway Museum, Wall Fiction's Featured Finds are paintings of Quebec and Atlantic Canada. 

Paginton first visited Quebec's Isle d'Orleans in 1927 with his Toronto Daily Star co-worker, Charlie Hagar. His next painting trip east focused on Atlantic Canada in 1932 to New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and the Lower St. Lawrence. Becoming a favourite of the artist, he returned in 1934 visiting Barachois, Gaspe and Perce Rock along with parts of Vermont and Massachusetts. 

Paginton was becoming a known Canadian artist at this time and exhibited his Eastern Canada paintings at the Robert Simpson Company Art Gallery in 1934 and again in 1936. His next known exhibition would be with the Art Association of Montreal in a juried group show in 1940 with Berthe Des Clayes, Marc Fortin, Jean Paul Lemieux, Henri Masson, David Milne, Anne Savage, Frederick Varley and Kathleen Morris and others.

“Delighted with the bold Canadianism in the Paginton canvases,” stated J.W. Beatty to the Toronto Daily Star on November 29, 1931 while reviewing Paginton’s first art exhibition and “expressed professional appreciation” to Paginton’s paintings. (Beatty was principal of the Ontario College of Art and had been Paginton’s art instructor in 1927.)
Paginton “indicates the ability and fine appreciation…for gradations of tone…and proves his ability to handle colour…He can successfully paint the wind,” stated a review in The Globe on March 3, 1934.


In 1941, Paginton took over J.W. Beatty's studio #4 in the Studio Building with A.Y. Jackson still working in Studio #1. Paginton once stated: "While in the Studio Building, I saw a lot of AY and became very fond of him – and admired his work very much."

Paginton continued exhibiting from 1941 to 1950 at the Art Gallery of Toronto (now the Art Gallery of Ontario) and with the Art Association of Montreal. He was invited by the St. John's Art Club in 1949 and 1951 when he painted a large series of Newfoundland landscapes.

Summer trips with his family continued to Isle d'Orleans, New Brunswick and other parts of Eastern Canada until the early 1970s.

Paginton is one of Canada's great plein air painters. His work is held by many esteemed private collectors and public and museum collections across Canada including the Art Gallery of Hamilton, Art Gallery of Algoma, Art Gallery of Northumberland, Art Gallery of Sudbury, Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Peel Art Gallery Museum and Archives, Robert McLaughlin Gallery and the City of Toronto, along with the National Capital Commission’s Official Residences Collection in Ottawa. 

Visit our Featured Finds section to see Eastern Canada paintings available for sale.

Gloucester, George Alfred Paginton, c. 1934



Would you hire an architect to design your house who was neither educated nor had specialized training or current membership in a recognized association for architects? I am certain you would not!

 Written by Wall Fiction's fine art advisor, Kelly Juhasz.


A qualified personal property appraiser provides a professional service. These specialized consultants have valuation methodology training as well as advanced education and sector experience. Qualified appraisers have been trained to produce professionally-written appraisal reports for estate and insurance purposes as well as other legal matters.

High-value items such as fine and decorative arts, collectables, gems and jewelry, as well as machinery and equipment have unique characteristics and trade in niche markets. Reporting an opinion of value requires a complex set of skills that take years to develop. Moreover, by producing arms-length reports, appraisers maintain their reputation as third-party experts eliminating conflicts of interest and ensuring transparency.

Working with qualified appraisers enables other professionals, including wealth and estate advisors and lawyers, to have greater confidence when advising their clients knowing that the opinions of value received were formed by unbiased and qualified professionals.


Kelly Juhasz



The independent personal property appraiser became a key component of the professional services sector in the early 1980s as a result of a developing need in the marketplace for more transparency and trust. The International Society of Appraisers (ISA), for example, was formed in 1979 as an extension of the Appraisal Foundation, a directive from the United States Congress, and mandated to protect the public, offer training in appraisal methodology and maintain appraiser credentials.

The Appraisal Foundation developed an appraiser code of conduct and set of standards under which qualified appraisers could base their consultancy. These standards called the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) are recognized in Canada and the United States and are updated every two years to reflect changes in the valuation field.

The Canada Revenue Agency lists USPAP as the recognized appraisal methodology standards for fair market value appraisal reports in their Gifts and Income Tax 2019 Guide.[i] As well, in July 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the United States issued a new rule regarding the valuations of charitable contributions that specifically cites the requirement that qualified appraisal reports conform to USPAP.[ii] The decisive role of qualified appraisers in the professional service sector was re-confirmed in 2019 by the United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit (Tax Court) whereby both parties determined that personal property assets would be better protected when a qualified and independent appraiser is retained to value one’s personal property.[iii]

These key legal decisions and recognition of appraisal standards signifies the added attention by government agencies to rigour in personal property valuation and an increasing appreciation of the need for qualified appraisers.

You would not hire an accountant, wealth advisor or insurance broker who did not have specialized training, was not a member of a recognized industry association with a code of conduct and ethics as well as a commitment to ongoing learning. Why would you hire someone calling themselves an appraiser to value your personal assets without similar credentials?

You can find a qualified personal property appraiser for your personal assets through the International Society of Appraisers (ISA).


[i] Canada Revenue Agency. (2019). Gifts and Income Tax Guide , P113 (E) Rev. 19, pg. 14-15.

[ii] Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service. (July 30, 2018). 26 CFR Parts 1 and 602 [TD 9836]
RIN 1545–BH62, Substantiation and Reporting Requirements for Cash and Noncash Charitable Contribution Deductions. Generally accepted appraisal standards are defined in the regulations at § 1.170A-17(a)(2) as the “substance and principles of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice [USPAP], as developed by the Appraisal Standards Board of the Appraisal Foundation.” 

[iii] Estate of Kollsman v. Commissioner, No. 18-70565 (9th Cir. June 21, 2019) & Estate of Kollsman v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2017-40 (February 22, 2017)


Kelly Juhasz is a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art and archives and able to value all personal property. She is an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers and a member of ISA's Private Client Services Group, a group of qualified appraisers who have completed specialized training and hold senior level industry experience in dealing with High Net Worth Individuals. She writes appraisal reports for insurance companies, wealth advisors, estate lawyers, government agencies and in the role of an expert witness. She also works directly with collectors, families, family offices, estates and beneficiaries. She is president of the Canadian Chapter of the International Society of Appraisers. 


What Our Customers Say About Us August 20 2020

"I received the final cheque for the paintings and just wanted to say thank you so much for all your help in selling them." (August 2021, Barrie) 

"The painting carton arrived today. You did a fantastic packing job. Thanks very much for shipping the art. I'm so happy to have the pieces for my new home." (April 2021, Halifax)

"Just wanted to let you know that I got it and it’s beautiful!!! Thank you!! 🕊" (March 2021, Los Angeles)

"That’s amazing! And in this market! I will sing your praises to anyone who has pieces to sell! 🙏"  (June 2020, Toronto) .... 




"I received my order today in perfect condition. Thank you for the quick turnaround and care taken with shipping."  (August 2020, Guelph)

"Thank you. I am very pleased with it. I appreciated your coming over to repair the frame, then hanging the painting for me. That's great customer service!!!" (January 2017, Toronto)

"Thanks again and we both appreciated your professionalism and care from the outset." (January 2017, Toronto)
"Just opened the tube. The print is spectacular and delighted to have Firenze in the stable. And the care and TLC related to its safe delivery was over the top." (November 2016, Washington, DC)
"I just received the painting and I love it! Thank you." (August, 2016, California)

ART CONFIDENTIAL Part 5 – Calling Yourself a Collector November 27 2019

Many people interested in buying original art are intimidated by the art world and don’t know where to turn for guidance. Art Confidential is a 5-part guide for new art buyers. The series is written to assist new art buyers in building a foundation and a starting point for an art buying adventure that will lead to a lifetime of enjoyment and, if you’re lucky, obsession.

Written by Kelly Juhasz, Fine Art Appraisal and Services

Originally published in Distillery District Magazine, January 2020, Vol. 44  

ART CONFIDENTIAL – 5-Part Guide for New Art Buyers

I vividly remember my first purchase of fine art as every collector does.

In discussion with a few art collectors, some serious and known, others who turned out to be shy to call themselves collectors, there were some definite common threads.

Most collected stuff as a kid. That made me think back and I realized, so did I. Some said they collected stamps, others coins, postcards, hockey cards and even bottlecaps. Mine was cups and saucers. Yes, it’s true. I loved them and it turned out that my passion in my early teens never left. That early “collection” lead me to learning about Japanese Export Porcelain which today is still on display in my living room.

Others, who have amassed a collection, were artists themselves. They traded or were gifted works by other artists while studying or attending workshops together while building their careers and developing their signature styles. Some supported each other at art sales and at smaller events. They gave works as gifts or exchange for other services. As these artists were picked up by galleries and secured museum exhibitions, their work became recognized and eventually, collectible. When I asked an artist who has a house full of work by other artists, she said, “Oh I’m not sure I would call myself a collector, maybe an “accidental collector.” 

Some collectors started buying paintings at yard sales as decoration and then began to get more interested in researching their newly acquired treasures. This was an inexpensive way to learn as well as an adventure to see what they might find next.

Inheritance was another way collections were started or continued. As the next generation were gifted works of art, they became the new custodians whose interests developed and evolved. Some of these new caretakers grew up surrounded by these objects of fine art and were witness to purchasing, learning and caring for fine art from a young age.

However one begins, here are some of the reasons why people collect:

  • joy of the pursuit of finding something interesting or the love of procuring;
  • health benefits tied to the relief of stress and taking one’s mind off work or other irritants;
  • obsession and the need to continuously acquire (it’s a fine line sometimes between collecting and hoarding but that’s another article);
  • investment and financial gain in both selling work at a profit and the future tax benefits of donating artwork to a charity;
  • pursuit of knowledge and continuing education about art, history, creative techniques and markets;
  • community building as getting involved in the fine art world increases social bonds between people with shared interests;
  • social recognition gained from sharing one’s collection with the public;
  • legacy creation to extend one’s influence in perpetuity;
  • communication of a message or point of view to persuade others by harnessing the power of art;
  • connect with the past or create affiliations with notable people or events; and
  • it’s a fun hobby.

Not everyone has to acquire a museum-worthy collection of art to call themselves a collector.

The shift from these early hobbies to developing a more targeted purchase of fine art develops over time and it’s never too late to start. We think of hobbies as things we do that bring us pleasure in our leisure time. Collecting is a hobby and when taken more seriously can enrich lives, and as such, you can now call yourself a collector.

Oh, and my first purchase twenty-four years ago, a Gathie Falk print titled “The White Dress.” It still brings me joy each time I look at it.

Kelly Juhasz is an art advisor and a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art and antiques and an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers. She is the principal at Fine Art Appraisal and Services offering artist legacy services, collection management, estate planning for treasure assets, sales services and Canadian Cultural Property appraisals.


ART CONFIDENTIAL Part 4 – Moving from Art Enthusiast to Art Collector November 27 2019

Many people interested in buying original art are intimidated by the art world and don’t know where to turn for guidance. Art Confidential is a 5-part guide for new art buyers. The series is written to assist new art buyers in building a foundation and a starting point for an art buying adventure that will lead to a lifetime of enjoyment and, if you’re lucky, obsession.

Written by Kelly Juhasz, Fine Art Appraisal and Services

Originally published in Distillery District Magazine, November 2019, Vol. 42  

ART CONFIDENTIAL – 5-Part Guide for New Art Buyers

Part 4

The pathway for many fine art collectors starts with an interest in hanging more than a poster on a living room wall. There is an excitement and enthusiasm that builds when one begins to look at original art. But there may also be some fear and perceived or real barriers. Many people wanting to learn more are intimidated by the jargon and scholarship associated with fine art. They are afraid to come across as uneducated and uncultured. It’s important not to let these fears prevent you from seeing the world in a different way. Like any other body of knowledge, one can learn an appreciation of fine art more easily than ever before. To begin, all you need is curiosity and time. It’s important to look at art as much as possible and make real a commitment to do so. Moving from enthusiast to collector is not only about looking, observing, and seeing, it continues on to describing, analyzing and interpreting.  

Here are some easy ways to begin looking at fine art in the city of Toronto and beyond:

  • On weekends, pick an area of the city with numerous art galleries such as the Distillery District, Yorkville, Ossington and the Junction and spend a low-stress day popping in and out.
  • Become a member of an art museum such as the Art Gallery of Ontario, the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the Power Plant or the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art. Your membership, at any level, will give you access to exhibition openings, talks by curators, special viewing times and the opportunity to be surrounded by others who share your interests in art.
  • Visit other art museums in the city including the Ryerson Image Centre, Gardiner Museum, Royal Ontario Museum, The Market Gallery, University of Toronto’s Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, Aga Khan Museum and others. Each has exhibitions, memberships and opportunities to see and learn.
  • Spend time online with museum collections and auction catalogues as major museums, auction houses and fine art galleries from around the world offer virtual exhibitions, articles and essays about artists, paintings, and historical and contemporary movements in fine art.
  • Subscribe to art magazines and newspapers such as Canadian Art, Inuit Art Quarterly, Border Crossings, The Art Newspaper, ARTnews and Apollo, just to name a few.
  • Attend the numerous art fairs in the city including Art Toronto, The Artist Project, and the Toronto Outdoor Art Fair that, in addition to showcasing established and emerging artists, offer talks and guided tours.
  • Retain the services of an art advisor to escort you around art fairs and point out significant works, established artists and emerging artists.
  • When on vacation, make a point of adding art museums to your itinerary.
  • Review online resources such as Visual Literacy by the Toledo Museum of Art and look for continuing education courses through art galleries and universities.

Deeper knowledge furthers your visual impact, increases your capabilities to see, and hones your ability to analyze and understand fine art and the world around you.

In becoming a collector, many will say that they selected a theme or genre of fine art as an area of focus. Because the fine art market is complex, selecting one aspect of fine art helps one direct his or her time looking and learning, understanding the associated investment commitments and narrowing his or her selection of artists, galleries, niche institutions and expert advisors. Advancement is only possible for someone who has spent the time looking at enough art and learning how to see art, and then understanding the value characteristics and the markets to have made decisions on his or her own tastes in fine art.

As collectors gain knowledge and confidence, they aim to develop a good eye. A good eye is an intuitive response cultivated from years of learning, looking at, and interpreting fine art that allows a judgement of fineness. Developing this skill helps you create your collection and at the same time, your aesthetic sensibility.

A good eye is the foundation of the artist, art historian, art advisor and art appraiser. Another word for this is a connoisseur, one who understands the details, techniques and principles of fine art and is competent to discern quality quickly. Critical tools of connoisseurship for art professionals provides the ability to think, question, investigate and build upon previous knowledge. At its highest level, it is an intellectual achievement in the development of taste.

For collectors, a good eye can mean one who enjoys with discrimination and appreciation of nuance. It can provide purpose in the creation of a collection with meaning and a focus on the artwork itself from a position of knowledge. It can mean having the ability to make good decisions in buying fine art.

For art professionals, the continuous pursuit of connoisseurship is a way of life. It’s all our time, training, practice and experience coming together. It’s about our ability to distinguish quality from quantity, as well as, our intuitive response based upon pattern recognition and ongoing work in providing meaning to both enthusiasts and collectors through exhibitions, valuations and building collections.

By building your own knowledge and developing your own eye, you can, with the assistance of a qualified fine art professional, make better decisions and extend the enjoyment of the artwork you acquire and look at every day.


Kelly Juhasz is an art advisor and a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art and antiques at Fine Art Appraisal and Services, and an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers. She is the principal at Fine Art Appraisal and Services offering artist legacy services, collection management, estate planning for treasure assets, sales services and Canadian Cultural Property appraisals.

ART CONFIDENTIAL Part 3 – Is Art an Investment? November 27 2019

Many people interested in buying original art are intimidated by the art world and don’t know where to turn for guidance. Art Confidential is a 5-part guide for new art buyers. The series is written to assist new art buyers in building a foundation and a starting point for an art buying adventure that will lead to a lifetime of enjoyment and, if you’re lucky, obsession.

Written by Kelly Juhasz, Fine Art Appraisal and Services

Originally published in Distillery District Magazine, September 2019, Vol. 40  

ART CONFIDENTIAL – 5-Part Guide for New Art Buyers

Part 3

It is true that art has become a recognized investment class and there are plenty of recent reports stating that fine art has outperformed other asset classes. There are even art market price indexes for measuring risk and returns. Fine art, however, is among the most illiquid of assets. The art market is unregulated, lacks transparency and subject to fluctuation. Only the top artist’s performances are tracked in the indexes and the data used to create the indexes contains omissions of sales information and other factors that determine value and market activity. To realize a solid return from fine art, it takes knowledge, lots of cash, luck and a great deal of time. 

Investing in art, or what are referred to as treasure assets such as coins, wine, vintage cars and antique objects, can be good investment repositories – for those with substantial wealth and an existing broad portfolio. In tough economic times, holding value is as important as increasing value in good times. But for most new art buyers considering buying art as an investment, there are some key points to learn before thinking that your art purchases will not only hold but increase in value to be counted as a viable asset class in your portfolio.

Most investments contain elements of risk. Risks in fine art can be attributed to global market changes, fickle consumer tastes, social and cultural trends, reduced access to market information, and a lack of knowledge. For new art buyers, the largest barriers to a solid return are the acquisition and liquidation costs.

New art buyers need to understand that not all original art increases in value over time. As discussed in Art Confidential Part 2, the characteristics of determining values of art are plenty and often subtle. The knowledge and information required to understand why one artist’s work sells for much more than another artist’s or why one piece by the same artist sells for more than another is formed through years of formal and informal education, experience in buying and selling, and a passion for continuous learning and looking. Most collectors who profit from their art purchases have obtained a high level of connoisseurship – judgement by intuition based on knowledge and understanding of the artist(s) and art markets – and have used a qualified art advisor or respected gallerist to direct them in their buying and learning. Access to this connoisseurship is key to buying for investment and the costs of obtaining this information can add to acquisition costs.

Buying fine art is easy.

But whether buying in the primary or secondary market, art purchases bring some additional carrying costs to keep in mind: framing, packaging, shipping, installation and insurance. Many new buyers think that they can skip one or all of these responsibilities. However, if you are trying to buy for investment, you need to protect the artwork for its future sale. The costs associated with acquisition range depending on the size and materials used to create the work but they can add hundreds, even thousands of dollars to your purchase just to get it on display. If you are purchasing at auction, you will have to pay a buyer’s premium on top of the hammer price (your winning bid) and that fee ranges from 12% to 25% of the hammer price. The costs of acquisition can add an additional 20% to 50% to the purchase price of your artwork.

Selling fine art is hard.

To divest yourself of the artwork, you are now selling in the secondary market (the market where artwork is sold a second time or by a subsequent owner such as on consignment through an auction house or specific fine art gallery). The options of selling the work yourself directly to another collector are slim unless you are an experienced collector with friends and colleagues who share the same buying habits and collection tastes.

Your options are limited to fine art auction houses who will take the artwork on consignment or specialized dealers who will offer to purchase directly from you as inventory to resell to one of their clients.

The consignment fees in the secondary market largely depend on the value of the artwork determined by the same value characteristic previously mentioned. These fees range from 20% to 50%. You may also have to pay a fee for photography to have it featured in the catalogue and additional insurance coverage while onsite at the auction house or gallery. All of these transactions costs can add up.

Let’s look at an example.

You have $10,000 to invest. You buy a painting by an established artist at auction. To account for the buyer’s premium and taxes, your winning bid has to be roughly $7,000. Add to that a 25% buyer’s premium ($1750) and 13% HST ($1,137.50). Then, you might have to reframe it, hire specialty art handlers to package, ship and hang it and you may want to add it to your insurance policy. The total acquisition costs are at or slightly over your $10,000 investment. Let’s estimate acquisition costs of $3,400. (Note I purposefully made the additional costs over the amount of investment because most new art buyers forget to include these costs.)

Ten years down the road, you decide to sell the artwork. Depending on who the artist is, the current art market (supply and demand and the state of the economy), and the condition of the artwork, the price needs to be set. To be optimistic, let’s say the artist’s profile increased, your work is known as one of his/her best to date and the economy is strong. For argument sake, the value increased by 40% (which is rare and lucky). You list it for auction. The consignment fees are 20% of the hammer (rates will depend on the estimated value of the artwork and differ between auction houses) and there is a photography fee of $100 and an insurance fee of 1.5% of the mid-auction estimate ($15,000 x 1.5% = $225). The painting is estimated at between $13,500 and $16,500 and sells at the high estimate of $16,500. You net $12,875 from the auction house. Your acquisition costs were $10,400. In the end, your return is $2,475. You may also have to claim and pay capital gains tax on your profit. This example illustrates the acquisition and transactions costs using a higher than normal increase in value for the artwork. Most investment reports state a 10-year return on a knowledgeable purchase of artwork is around 5% and likely much lower if there is a return at all. 

Many top collectors say that buying blue-chip art is a hedge against recession. Note the word blue-chip. Most new art buyers are not buying art at this level. Blue-chip art is art with significant value (five, six and seven digit price tags) that is expected to hold or increase its value. Examples may include Jean-Michel Basquiat, Pablo Picasso, Claude Monet, Peter Doig, Tracey Emin or Andy Warhol. In the Canadian art market that may include Emily Carr, Jack Bush, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Alex Colville or Jeff Wall.

Buying art is not for the risk-averse investor. But if you do buy with investment as part of your goals (other than enjoyment), you’ll want to spread the transaction costs over a long, long period of time.

Most dealers and advisors will say buy what you love. This isn’t buying for investment but with a little knowledge (your own or from an art advisor) and a passion for owning original art, you’ll be able to enjoy your purchase every day for as long as it makes you happy and maybe you’ll be able to resell it at a profit.

Remember, most art buyers buy because they love being surrounded with original art and they realize that some may increase in value but most will remain works they just love to view and possess. If you are interested in buying art as an investment, it is beneficial to work with an advisor to help you select the best work available by the best artists in the best market at the best time in your price range. 


Kelly Juhasz is an art advisor and a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art and antiques at Fine Art Appraisal and Services, and an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers. She is the principal at Fine Art Appraisal and Services offering artist legacy services, collection management, estate planning for treasure assets, sales services and Canadian Cultural Property appraisals.

ART CONFIDENTIAL Part 2 – Questions New Art Buyers Are Afraid to Ask November 27 2019

Many people interested in buying original art are intimidated by the art world and don’t know where to turn for guidance. Art Confidential is a 5-part guide for new art buyers. The series is written to assist new art buyers in building a foundation and a starting point for an art buying adventure that will lead to a lifetime of enjoyment and, if you’re lucky, obsession.

Written by Kelly Juhasz, Fine Art Appraisal and Services

Originally published in Distillery District Magazine, July 2019, Vol. 38  

ART CONFIDENTIAL – 5-Part Guide for New Art Buyers

Part 2 

Many people interested in learning more about buying original art are intimidated by the art world and are afraid to ask about what they don’t know. You are not alone if this describes you.

Asking a lot of questions helps you gain a deeper understanding and establish a higher level of comfort in buying. Those of us working in the art world love to talk about art and share our knowledge, so begin asking questions right now.

To get you started and to support new art buyers in building a foundation of art market knowledge, here is an introductory list of questions which will help build your confidence.

  1. What determines the value of a work of art?
Numerous factors determine the value characteristics of art including:
  • the artist’s skill and talent,
  • formal elements of the artwork such as composition, colour, technique, size, materials and condition,
  • the artist’s education, experience, reputation and supply of work,
  • collectors’ demand and tastes,
  • subject, message and meaning,
  • a consistent and recognizable style, and
  • past ownership (provenance) and exhibition history.

When looking at a celebrated artist’s overall body of work (oeuvre), there will be work for which the artist became known. It is important for new art buyers interested in purchasing historical or recognized contemporary work to understand the career of the artist and learn which of these value characteristics are important in setting the prices of the artists under consideration.

A qualified art advisor and appraiser can assist you in buying quality pieces at good prices. The advice you will receive is educated, experienced, transparent and independent. A qualified advisor can help you learn and prevent you from making big mistakes.


  1. What do I ask the artist or gallerist about the artwork?
Artists and gallerists love to talk about art and are eager to share information and stories with interested collectors. Ask questions about the artwork, the artist’s process and career. If taking directly with the artist, it’s okay to ask what the work is trying to convey to see if you see and feel what they want you to see and feel. It’s also okay to see and feel something different.

 When looking at a historical work, talk to the gallerist about where the work fits into the artist’s career and inquire why and how the artist is celebrated. Ask about the artist’s selection of materials and size, and ask how their market has performed over the last five years. Inquire as to the supply of work by the artist to find out how often their work comes available. These kinds of questions will help you learn about the value characteristics important to the particular artists who have peaked your interest.


  1. If the price is not posted, is it okay to inquire?
There are occasions when dealers do not purposely post prices and may make a point of not telling you. But these are old-school practices being pushed aside for increased transparency and to attract new art buyers. In some cases, certain collectors may not wish to have the prices for artwork easily revealed and would prefer that prices not be posted so that their friends, family and/or business associates don’t know what they are spending on art. Dealers want to protect their artists and collectors, and at the same time, create some mystery and demand for the artwork to attract new collectors. In addition, having to ask for the price is an opportunity for the dealer to engage in a conversation with potential collectors about tastes, budget and level of interest in buying.

Artwork hanging in a booth at an art fair or in a gallery is there to be purchased. Artists or gallerists may not like the look of the price or a label on the wall beside the work. They may not feel that the process should be about the price because they want you to focus on the artwork. But, for most of us, we can’t buy if we don’t know the price. So, yes, ask for the price. If you really like the artist's work but the price doesn't fall within your budget, they may have a smaller work or a work on paper that is more in your price range. Do not be embarrassed if they don’t. You’ll just have to keep looking and that’s a lot of fun. 


  1. Is asking for a discount on the price common practice?
Selling artwork is how the artist and gallerist make their living so asking for a discount is not okay for new art buyers. In some cases, discounts may be given by artists or galleries if you are a regular buyer of their work or you are purchasing more than one piece. The same is true about asking whether or not you have to pay tax; we all have to pay tax. So, don't take away from the enjoyment of buying original art by asking these questions. The story you want to create is about the artwork and your conversation with the artist or gallery is part of your buying experience that will last years and add to your delight in the work.


  1. Can I return a work after I’ve purchased it?
In most cases, the purchase of artwork in person or online is final. Some artists or galleries may have a policy that the work must be returned within a certain period of time or that you can take it home on a trial basis for a non-refundable deposit. Sometimes, the artist or gallerist may bring the work over themselves to help you decide. Ask about this before you make the purchase, especially if you are unsure or you are buying as a couple and one of you isn't as sure as the other.


  1. When I buy a piece of original art, is it mine to use however I want?
When you buy a work of art, you only own the physical object. Ownership of an artwork does not grant you copyright. Copyright means the right to copy the image. The artist maintains copyright (economic and moral rights meaning receiving payment for the use of their work and controlling how their images are used) therefore, you cannot use the image of the work in any way, i.e., you cannot sell reproduction prints or t-shirts or phone cases with the image on them. However, the artist still can, even with the image of the painting or print that you purchased. If you are interested in using the image for your own business, you must come to an agreement (best if it is in writing) with the artist. In some cases, the owner of the rights to the artist’s work may be the artist’s estate, heirs or a foundation should the artist be deceased. Typically copyright on an image lasts the lifetime of the artist plus 50 years but different artworks and artists may be subject to different conditions of use. Work in the public domain (work not subject to copyright restrictions) can be used without permission. To use images of artwork, always seek permission.


  1. Is art an investment?

It can be. Art falls into a category called “treasure assets” and for these kinds of assets to be an investment, a buyer must know a great deal about the art and how the art markets operate. Art as an investment is very high risk and typically longer term because of the high transaction costs. For work purchased directly from an artist or from an artist’s dealer, collectors would be reselling in the secondary market (the market where artwork is sold a second time or by a subsequent owner such as on consignment through an auction house or specific fine art gallery) and it is the costs of buying and reselling that can range up to 50 percent in commissions to the dealer, advisor and/or auction house. Commission rates are often dependent on the selling price. There are also the costs of packaging, transportation, framing, insurance and capital gains tax on work that has increased in value from the day it was purchased to the day it is resold.

In order to realize a solid gain, the value of the art sold would need to have increased substantially to cover all associated expenses. Much of the artwork purchased in the primary market falls in value if it enters the secondary market. Knowing the market trends and value characteristics of particular artists will help you select works that could increase in value over time. Carefully selected artwork and an investor armed with great art knowledge and market information would likely see a return similar to bonds. On the other hand, your art may be worth more than you think if you’ve inherited some work or started buying recognized artists’ work a long time ago.

Have the artwork appraised by a qualified appraiser. Remember, most art buyers buy because they love being surrounded with original art and they realize that some may increase in value but most will remain works they just love to view and possess. If you are interested in buying art as an investment, it is beneficial to work with an advisor to help you select the best work available by the best artists in the best market at the best time in your price range.   


  1. What do I need to do after I’ve purchased art?
Art requires specialized care and maintenance; begin by considering the following:
  • You may need to insure the work. Check your existing homeowner/tenant insurance policy to see if it covers fine art and for how much and from when/where that coverage takes effect.
  • Part of care and maintenance are the framing requirements for the work. Framing with poor quality materials and workmanship can prove to be more expensive than spending extra money upfront for conservation framing. For example, wood pulp in mat board for prints and photographs could burn the artwork and, without the proper glazing or glass, UV light can fade work so consider acid-free matting and UV protected glazing.
  • Find out how best to transport your artwork and display it. Sixty percent of insurance claims for fine art are due to damage during transit or hanging. Talk to the artist, art advisor, framer and/or installer for help with finding the best materials and location with optimum conditions to display and protect your new acquisitions.
  • Establish a paper trail. Keep all background information concerning your art purchases including the purchase receipt and promotional materials from the exhibition. If possible, take a photo of yourself with the artist with the two of you holding the work. Create an inventory list with the artist’s name, title of the work, year it was created, details of the signatures and the exhibition history (or auction or gallery information) along with an image. If you are buying a work in the secondary market, obtain past ownership details at the time of purchase.


  1. How can I find out the value of my art for insurance coverage or my estate?

Always work with a qualified appraiser who is a member of a recognized personal property appraisal organization such as the International Society of Appraisers. A qualified appraiser can help you manage all the responsibilities you have as an art owner. They can reduce your risks by providing unbiased and thoughtful opinions of value upon which you can base your financial decisions. As well, a qualified appraiser’s value conclusions are based on prescribed methods of evaluation, research, report writing standards, formal education and training. Remember, many qualified appraisers are also advisors but not many advisors are also qualified appraisers.


Kelly Juhasz is an art advisor and a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art and antiques at Fine Art Appraisal and Services, and an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers. She is the principal at Fine Art Appraisal and Services offering artist legacy services, collection management, estate planning for treasure assets, sales services and Canadian Cultural Property appraisals.

ART CONFIDENTIAL Part 1 – Initiation into the Art World November 27 2019

Many people interested in buying original art are intimidated by the art world and don’t know where to turn for guidance. Art Confidential is a 5-part guide for new art buyers. The series is written to assist new art buyers in building a foundation and a starting point for an art buying adventure that will lead to a lifetime of enjoyment and, if you’re lucky, obsession.

Written by Kelly Juhasz, Fine Art Appraisal and Services

Originally published in Distillery District Magazine, May 2019 Vol. 36  

ART CONFIDENTIAL – 5-Part Guide for New Art Buyers

Part 1 –  Initiation into the Art World walks new art buyers through a short process of self-discovery so as not to get overwhelmed by the number of options and approaches to becoming an art collector.

Gaining some early insight will allow smooth navigation through a complex and multi-billion dollar industry, and open art up to anyone believing that they did not belong.

1. Learn and study as much as you can about art. It takes two things to develop your tastes in art: interest and time. Spend as much time as possible looking at various forms of art in museum collections, in person or online. Visiting art fairs, although overwhelming at times, is one of the best ways to see a wide variety of art. Make note of the artists that you like. The more art you can look at the more you’ll start to identify styles and images that evoke an emotional reaction – both good and bad. Make note of what you don’t like too, as this will help you focus on the qualities that are important to you.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What do I like about it and how does it make me feel when I look at it?
  • Do I want to live with objects that inspire me, challenge me, look good in the room or remind me of a time and place?
  • What subjects or historical times are important to me?
  • Why do I want to collect art?

When possible, talk to the artist, gallery or museum staff. Look at your friend’s artwork and ask them questions about what and why they purchased what they did. Talk about art and begin to bring it further into your life. You don’t have to be an expert and it’s okay to say you don’t know or don’t like an artist’s work. By talking about art, you will learn and begin the wonderful journey of becoming a collector.

Art advisors can help you navigate the complexities of the artworld by working with you to help you answer the above questions. Art advisors can escort you through art fairs, art galleries and/or museum exhibitions helping you narrow down preferences and identify quality works for purchase; more about art advisors is covered further on. Your interests will become more intense as you develop a better understanding and a higher level of comfort with art.

2. Understand how the art market works and what determines the price for an artwork. The art market has two markets – the primary market whereby artwork is sold for the first time by the artist or their gallery representatives, and the secondary market whereby artwork is sold a second time or by a subsequent owner such as on consignment through an auction house or specific fine art galleries. These two markets, which used to be quite separate, now find themselves selling the same artists and it can get confusing for new buyers to understand the differences, and how and why to buy in each.

It takes time to understand why one artist’s work is more valuable than another artist, or why a piece by the same artist is priced much higher or lower than another piece. Pricing can be subjective and at the same time, based on a number of concrete factors including the artist’s career and accomplishments; the artwork’s exhibition history; changes in consumer tastes and decorating styles; the economy and the level of disposable income available for the purchase of art; the cost of materials; and the supply and demand of the artist’s work.

The art markets are competitive as are some collectors. As new art buyers, pick a few artists that you like and follow them in both markets. Identify in which galleries their work is sold and see if any of their works are listed in the secondary markets. Attend talks given by art advisors, gallerists, auction houses and art fairs such as Art Toronto. Read about the trends in the art market. You can start with subscribing to magazines such as Canadian Art or online newsletters from Christie’s and Sotheby’s, Artsy or The Art Newspaper. 

3.  Let yourself fall in love. Just like personal relationships, as new collectors, you will made mistakes. Perhaps the decision to buy was rushed or little thought was given to where the artwork might hang and if it would fit. Here’s a common scenario: The artist is hot and all your friends are buying a piece, so you buy the piece that’s not the best in the show or the exact piece you wanted because someone else beat you to it. You might suffer buyer’s remorse.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Am I feeling pressure to buy from the artist, dealer, friends or spouse?
  • Am I caught up in the hype surrounding this artist?
  • Have I spent time learning more about this artist and/or their gallery or dealer?
  • Do I really love it?

Accept that your tastes may change. As you develop your eye, you may find that what you love ten years down the road might be nothing like what you’re looking at now. You’ll see a natural evolution in your collecting habits over time as you narrow or expand what you love in art and how it affects your environment. You’ll make decisions faster and you’ll come to understand the art, artists and pricing better. Art, for a private collector, is an emotional experience.

4. Buy what you can afford. For new collectors, limited edition prints can be more affordable and photography can be a more accessible medium because it also often sells in limited numbered editions; the lower the edition number the better (of 10, of 25, of 50). Typically, single artworks will be more expensive as they are one of a kind. This includes original paintings, sculptures and monoprints. Until you gain a sense of the art market and what you like, do not spend more than what you would normally spend on entertainment, vacations or other discretionary purchases. There is no limit on how much can be spent on artwork so as you garner more knowledge and confidence, there will be plenty of time to advance in your buying.

5. Ask for help in buying. To learn more or to help you feel more comfortable, you can work with an art advisor. Make sure your advisor is knowledgeable, reputable and associated with a known art industry association with standards they must follow. Advisors can suggest artists to watch, find artwork that meets your needs and tastes, and in some cases, negotiate prices and terms for purchases on your behalf. Good advisors are part of a network of ethical and professional members of the art world and are always at the art fairs, auctions, gallery openings and following trends in the art market. You don’t necessarily see them but they’re there working for their clients.

If you are interacting with a dealer or gallery owner, understand that they have invested their time and resources in the careers and talents of specific artists and have years of experience in the art markets. Asking questions is expected and those with the knowledge are happy to share what they know to assist new collectors navigate what many feel is an intimidating world. Learning about art and living with art is exciting and rewarding.


Kelly Juhasz is an art advisor and a qualified appraiser specializing in fine art at Fine Art Appraisal and Services. She is an Accredited Member of the International Society of Appraisers (ISA) and a member of the ISA Private Client Services Group. She is principal at Fine Art Appraisal and Services offering collection management, estate planning for treasure assets, buying and selling services, and full appraisal reporting.


Frederick Alexander Fraser Canadian Watercolourist & Master Engraver November 18 2019


Frederick Alexander Fraser (1897-1975), the youngest of the twelve children of Scottish immigrant parents, was born and lived in Toronto. His early life was difficult as his father, Simon Fraser, lost his bakery and his sulky racing stallion, Abdulla, on a single horse race and then, abandoned his family following this loss. On his 14th birthday, June 17, Fred left school to go to work. He was in Grade 7.

Fraser’s first job was in the commercial printing industry at Photo Engravers where he polished stones used in the printing process. His creative talent and developing interest in art allowed him to move to typesetting and then into the art department.

Frederick Alexander Fraser in 1926
Frederick Alexander Fraser in 1916, age 29.

At age 21, Fraser began attending night classes at the Ontario College of Art (OCA) and studied regularly from 1918 to 1929. At OCA, he studied under some of Canada’s best instructors and recognized landscape artists including George Reid, Charles MacDonald Manly, John William (J.W.) Beatty, Arthur Lismer and James Edward Hervey (J.E.H.) MacDonald. It didn’t take long for Fraser to find his niche and for others to recognize his artistic ability. Fraser won Honourable Mentions in the Evening Costume Class in 1920 and 1921, and was the recipient of the Brigden Scholarship in 1922, awarded to a student showing exceptional ability.

Certificate for Brigden Scholarship,  Proficiency in Evening Costume Class, Ontario College of Art, 1922.

Certificate for Brigden Scholarship, Proficiency in Evening Costume Class,
Ontario College of Art, 1922.

Fraser earned a Temporary Vocational Teaching Certificate in 1932 from the Ontario College for Technical Teachers which had been established in Hamilton in 1925. By the time his Vocational Teaching Certificate became permanent in 1935, Fred had married Hazel, nee Finch (1903-1997), and had two children, Barbara and Donal.

Hired as an art instructor at Western Technical-Commercial School, Fraser taught still life, life drawing, watercolour and lettering from 1932 to 1963 alongside Lawrence Arthur Colley (L.A.C.) Panton. To be close to his teaching position, Fraser moved to Durie Street and then to Runnymede Road in Toronto's Bloor West Village. In 1937, Fraser purchased his first car, a new Plymouth. The family, now including two more children, Valerie  and  Roderick, spent summers in Muskoka.  First, they camped on the shores of Gull Lake, Gravenhurst, then they built a cottage on Fox Lake, near Huntsville. Oils and watercolours of the Muskoka region make up some of Fraser’s body of work.

One of Fraser's most well-known students was Harold Barling Town, a founding member of the Canadian Painters Eleven group of abstract artists. Town enrolled in the art program at Western Technical in 1938 at age 14. From the time he started at Western Technical, Town referred to himself as an artist.[1] Fraser was a known disciplinarian and Town was a known troublemaker. Fraser always said that he was very proud of Town’s accomplishments as an artist. As Fraser worked and taught in multiple mediums perhaps his influence on Town was to help him defy stylistic trademarks and to create in all mediums. Fraser and Town both excelled in painting and printmaking and both artists appreciated craftsmanship. Fraser was conventional for his time, yet Town was anything but. Town went on to create some of Canada’s most collected works, and Fraser’s are now being rediscovered.

Another of Fraser’s Western Technical students (1948-1952) was Vancouver Island-based woodblock artist Graham A. Scholes who remembered Fraser well.  Scholes wrote in 2019 that Fraser had a positive influence on him as a student: “He was a task master and was most instrumental in developing my ability to paint in watercolours. I realize now, the influence he had on me in my move to printmaking.”

Fraser joined the various Canadian art associations for connections, recognition and exhibition opportunities. From 1926 to 1956, he exhibited with the Ontario Society of Artists, Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour, Canadian National Exhibition, Canadian Society of Graphic Art and the Art Association of Montreal. Like his colleagues including L.A.C. Panton and J. W. Beatty, he was not only a member but also became part of the Board of Directors. He was Treasurer for the Canadian Society of Graphic Art from 1945 to 1954. 

Fraser was an artist who contributed to the distinctive tradition of Canadian painting. He knew the work of earlier Canadian painters and his peers including Group of Seven members along with Quebec-based watercolourists and wood engravers such as Edwin Holgate and Goodridge Roberts; his work was exhibited with theirs.

Fraser’s documenting of industrialization started early in the 1920s with the docks and street scenes of Montreal and Toronto. Prior to and during WWII, he captured the workers at the lumber mill, road building and, one of the family’s favourites, at Ollie Elm’s tire shop on Elm Street in Toronto.

In addition to watercolour painting and life drawing, Fraser taught lettering and printing. An understanding of printing techniques and a skilled command of a graver allowed him to capture light and mood with precise detail, particularly in his wood engravings, the benchmark in fine relief printing. 

In the company of A.J. Casson, A.Y. Jackson and W.J. Phillips, Fraser produced relief print Christmas cards of his own graphics from elaborate woodcut or lino blocks using his own printing press.

Fred supported the local community by creating posters for Runnymede United Church and for William H. Temple, also known as “Temperance Bill”, who was a member of the Ontario parliament and a crusader for keeping West Toronto alcohol free.

After he retired from teaching in 1963, Fraser began creating designs for medallions and entered coin design competitions across the country. His work was noticed by the Wellings Manufacturing Co. Ltd. of Toronto where in 1964, he created the Stratford City Council’s memorial medallion to commemorate Shakespeare’s 400th birthday that was issued in bronze, silver, gold and platinum. He then created a series of the fathers of Confederation for Canada’s Centennial in 1967.

Fraser passed away on February 16, 1975 at home. 

In 1991, his family donated some of his teaching books on illustration, composition and design to the Art Gallery of Ontario’s library.

Frederick Alexander Fraser’s artwork is held in both private and public collections.

[1] Iris Nowell in P11, Painters Eleven: The Wild Ones of Canadian Art, page 159, Douglas & McIntyre, 2011.


Museum Collections:

The Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Oshawa, ON  (Gifts from Charles Goldhamer in 1985 and Joan Murray, 3 paintings, in 1989)


1956    Ontario Society of Artists

1945    Canadian Society of Graphic Art

1944    Canadian Society of Graphic Art

1943    Ontario Society of Artists, Canadian Society of Graphic Art

1942    Ontario Society of Artists, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1939    Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1938    Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1937    Canadian Society of Graphic Art, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1936    Canadian National Exhibition, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1935    Canadian National Exhibition, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1934    Ontario Society of Artists, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour, Canadian National Exhibition

1933    Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour

1932    Ontario Society of Artists

1931    Canadian Society of Graphic Art, Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour (CSPWC), Canadian National Exhibition

1930    Ontario Society of Artists, Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, Canadian National Exhibition, Art Association of Montreal

1929    Ontario Society of Artists, Canadian Society of Graphic Art, Canadian National Exhibition, Art Association of Montreal

1928    Ontario Society of Artists (OSA), Canadian Society of Graphic Art (CSGA), Art Association of Montreal, Canadian National Exhibition       

1927    Art Association of Montreal

1926    Ontario Society of Artists (OSA), Canadian Society of Graphic Art (CSGA), Royal Canadian Academy of Arts (RCA), Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), Art Association of Montreal (now Montreal Museum of Fine Arts)



Fulford, Robert. (1969). Harold Town Drawings. McClelland and Stewart Ltd., Toronto.
Government of Canada, Artists in Canada retrieved online at
Ontario Library Review. (1949). Who’s Who in Ontario Art. The King’s Most Excellent Majesty Press.
McMann, Evelyn de R. (?) Biographical Index of Artists in Canada. Page 77. University of Toronto Press.
McMann, Evelyn de R. (?) Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, formerly Art Association of Montreal, Spring Exhibitions 1880-1970. Page 134. University of Toronto Press.
McMann, Evelyn de R. (?) Royal Canadian Academy of Arts/Academie royale des arts du Canada, Exhibitions and Members 1880-1979. Page 136-137. University of Toronto Press.
Nowell, Iris. (2011).  P11, Painters Eleven: The Wild Ones of Canadian Art, page 159, Douglas & McIntyre.
Saur, K. G.. (2005). Allgemeines Kunstler-Lexikon Die Bildenden Kunstler aller Zeiten und Volker, Band 44 Francoini-Freyenmuth. Page 195. Munich, Leipzig.
The Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Permanent Collection retrieved online at[M3ONLINE]error.html







George Paginton: Painting a Nation October 21 2019

A new book about Canadian landscape artist, George Paginton, is now available on click now to buy.

Written by Canadian art curators, Sharona Adamowicz-Clements and Darrin J. Martens, this book explores the life and work of a relatively unknown Canadian landscape painter.


Assistance with not only the book but also the exhibition at Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives (PAMA) was supplied by the owner of Wall Fiction and Fine Art Appraisal and Services, Kelly Juhasz, who has been working with the artist's family, Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp, on the public rediscovery of this artist and the nation's love of Canadian landscape painting.

The book is described as follows:

A beautiful and long-overdue portrait of a great, but little known, painter of the vast Canadian natural and urban landscape.

George Paginton: Painting a Nation explores the journey of a relatively unknown Canadian landscape painter who was a peer of members of the Group of Seven. Paginton's private passion was to document the wonder of nature from coast to coast. A prolific artist, Paginton created over 1500 oil paintings, the majority of which never exhibited or sold commercially. This publication aims to present the artist to Canadians and include him in the art historical cannon of the nation.

Click to buy the book now and rediscover the beauty in Canadian landscape painting.

Click here to see the paintings available for sale on Wall Fiction.

Capturing the Essence of the Canadian Landscape October 02 2019

Brampton, ON (October 1, 2019) – Explore the vast beauty of Canada through the art of one of Ontario’s rediscovered painters, George Paginton – a contemporary of the Group of Seven.

This large-scale retrospective exhibition kicks-off its cross Canada tour at the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives (PAMA) in historic downtown Brampton on October 10. The show runs to February 9, 2020 with interactive programming throughout and accompanied by a beautiful hard cover publication about the artist available for purchase in the PAMA store for $40.

George Paginton, Canadian (1901-1988), Caledon, Ontario, 1940, Oil on canvas board, 21.75 x 27 cm @Collection of Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp, 2018

George Paginton, Canadian (1901- 1988), Self portrait, c. 1974, Oil on canvas board, 50.75 x 40.5 cm, @Collection of Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp, 2018.

Brampton, ON (October 1, 2019) – Explore the vast beauty of Canada through the art of one of Ontario’s rediscovered painters, George Paginton – a contemporary of the Group of Seven. This large-scale retrospective exhibition kicks-off its cross Canada tour at the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives (PAMA) in historic downtown Brampton on October 10. The show runs to February 9, 2020 with interactive programming throughout and accompanied by a beautiful hard cover publication about the artist available for purchase in the PAMA store for $40.

Media Preview Opportunities:

  • Book an appointment Wednesday, Oct. 9 (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.) to have an exclusive Curator walk-through.
  • Or be our guest for the VIP (invitation only) Opening Reception on Thursday, Oct. 10 from 7 – 9 p.m.

Contact Erin Fernandes or call 416-312-3425.

George Paginton, a lesser known Canadian landscape painter who was a peer of members of the Group of Seven, was determined to document the wonder of nature from coast to coast. A prolific yet very private artist, Paginton created over 1,500 oil paintings, the majority of which were never exhibited or sold commercially. George Paginton: Painting a Nation marks the introduction of his work which spanned over 70 years. “The opportunity to create new Canadian art history is thrilling,” notes PAMA Senior Curator of Art Darrin Martens. “Paginton pursued his private passion of capturing the essence of the Canadian landscape with a sense of purpose,” says co-curator Sharona Adamowicz-Clements.

The exhibition and publication are supported by the Government of Canada Museums Assistance Program with special thanks to our exhibit sponsors Wall Fiction and Stellar Art Services and our media partners, Brampton Guardian, Caledon Enterprise, Mississauga News and JazzFM.

“What a pleasure to represent Paginton’s work at and to work with the artist’s family and such enthusiastic and knowledgeable curators at PAMA,” says Kelly Juhasz, owner of Wall Fiction. “Supporting this exhibition helps fill gaps in Canadian art history and highlights the beauty of a Canadian place and moment captured through plein air painting.”

Programming Highlights

  • Curator Talk: Sunday, October 27, 2019 | 2 p.m.
  • Seniors Studio: Monday, November 4 | 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
  • Family Sunday FUNday: Sunday, November 17 | 1 – 4 p.m.
  • PAMA Paints, Landscape Workshop: Thursday, December 5, 2019 | 6:30 p.m.
  • Panel Discussion: Thursday, February 6, 2020 | 7 p.m.

PAMA is a place to explore and learn about Peel Region’s culture and heritage, as well as use conversation, questions and stories to help make new and fascinating connections to the surrounding community. Throughout the year, PAMA offers a variety of workshops and programs for all ages, families and adults. With so many different programs to choose from, PAMA has something for everyone. Operated by the Region of Peel, PAMA is located at 9 Wellington Street, East in Brampton. Visit to learn more.


The Region of Peel works with residents and partners to create a healthy, safe and connected Community for Life for more than 1.5 million people and 175,000 businesses in the cities of Brampton and Mississauga and the Town of Caledon. Peel's services touch the lives of residents every day. Recognized as a leader in management and service delivery, the Region of Peel is the only government organization at any level to receive Excellence Canada's Platinum Award for Excellence, Innovation and Wellness®. For more information about the Region of Peel, explore and follow us on Twitter at @regionofpeel.


Media Contacts

Erin Fernandes
Marketing Coordinator
D: 905-791-4055, ext. 7596
M: 416-312-3425

George Paginton Exhibition at PAMA September 01 2019

Mark your calendar!

George Paginton: Painting a Nation

Exhibition at PAMA - Peel Art Gallery Museum + Archives

Oct. 10, 2019 - Feb. 9, 2020
Art Gallery View of a landscape with hills

Connect with beautiful landscape paintings by George Paginton that capture scenes in the Region of Peel and from across Canada. Created in the tradition of the world-famous Group of Seven Painters, this exhibition reveals his passion for the Canadian landscape and use of expressive brush strokes

Curator Talk: Sunday October 27, 2019, 2:00 pm

PAMA Paints: Landscape Workshop: Thursday, December 5, 2019, 6:30 pm 

Panel Discussion: Thursday, February 6, 2020, 7:00 pm 

Artwork Credit:
George Paginton, Canadian (1901-1988) 
Caledon, Ontario, 1940
Oil on canvas board 21.75 x 27 cm 
Collection of Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp 
©Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp, 2018

Supported by the Government of Canada
     Stellar     Jazz FM


Wall Fiction is pleased to announce a new partnership with the estate of artist Frederick Alexander Fraser. Check back soon for available art works for sale.


Frederick Alexander Fraser (Canadian, 1897-1975) was known for his watercolours and exhibited with the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour. These Toronto-based factory pieces painted during World War II show Fraser’s technical ability.

Details of untitled watercolours by Frederick A. Fraser. Private Collection, Toronto.


Fraser’s oils are clearly influenced by the Group of Seven. His strong colour palette and sensitive brush capture the essence of the day.

“Autumn Wind” Oil on Canvas, 28 x 38 inches. Private Collection, Toronto. 

Untitled Winter Landscape, Oil on Canvas, 24 x 30 inches. Private Collection, Toronto.


Fraser had his own printing press in his basement where he sometimes produced his own Christmas cards and prints using elaborate negative woodcut blocks or engraved linoleum.

Detail of “Wood engraving – Tobermory” by Frederick A. Fraser. Private Collection, Toronto. 

Detail of untitled wood engraving by Frederick A. Fraser. Private Collection, Toronto.


Born and raised in downtown Toronto, Frederick Alexander Fraser (Canadian, 1897-1975) attended night classes at the Ontario College of Art from 1918 to 1929 and received a teaching certificate from the Ontario College for Technical Teachers established in 1925 in Hamilton.

One of his first jobs was in the commercial printing industry where he polished stones used in the printing process. He quickly moved on to typesetting and then into the art department.

Fraser moved to Toronto's Bloor West Village when he became an art instructor at Western Technical-Commercial School where he taught from 1931 to 1963. One of Fraser's most well know students was Harold Barling Town, a founding member of the Canadian Painters Eleven group of abstract artists. Fraser was known to say that he was always very proud of Town’s accomplishments as an artist.

Drawing by Harold Town in the 1942 Western Technical-Commercial School yearbook.

(Gerta Moray. Harold Town, Life & Work. Art Canada Institute, 2014. Image credit: Drawing by Town in the comic book style, which appeared in his 1942 Western Technical-Commercial School yearbook. Library and Archives Canada, MG 30 D 404, vol. 1, Westward Ho. Western Technical Commercial School Yearbook, 1942. Estate of Harold Town. Photograph by Gaeby Abrahams.)


Because Wall Fiction friends are loving these prints .

Known as the Picasso Estate Collection, these prints were issued by the artist’s granddaughter, Marina Picasso. The unframed lithographs are beautifully printed in an edition of 500 on quality Arches paper measuring 22 x 30 inches. To ensure authenticity, each print is signed and numbered in pencil by Marina Picasso as "Collection Marina Picasso" and embossed with the estate and chromist's seals, along with a stamp on the reverse "Approved by the heirs of Pablo Picasso". 

The more you like, the better your price because everyone needs a little Picasso in their life!

A framed Picasso is even better! 

Latitude 44 Gallery and Framing is pleased to offer all Wall Fiction friends a 20% discount on framing. 
All sales are final. 
Email us if you're interested as there are still prints available.   



George Paginton (Canadian, 1901-1988) was a plein air painter who carried his paintings and supplies in a wooden painter’s box. Most of his paintings have raw edges around the canvas board, exposed bits of canvas and sometimes specs of dirt and natural debris from being painted outdoors in a single sitting. In the same manner of the Group of Seven painters, these are often referred to as sketches, however, only a few were ever reworked into larger canvases.

Often George’s work was placed wet into his wooden painter’s box and paintings were stacked together causing slight abrasions and where thicker areas of paint pressed against the box or another painting may have caused minor flattening of the peaks. Because of painting outdoors, the backs of many paintings show watermarks, stains and/or paint splotches.

For this artist, none of these would be considered condition issues but all part of the artist’s rugged and truthful style and part of his technique of single-sitting plein air painting.

Often the back of the paintings have old sticker marks or brown paper pieces glued on. His son, Tony Paginton, affixed brown paper labels with handwritten notes about when the painting was first photographed; this occurred in the mid-1960s. After the artist’s death, Tony numbered each painting and catalogued them. These numbers on the verso are the inventory numbers and are seen on almost all the works.

On occasion the artist recorded the location and date of the painting on the verso, and sometimes the artist’s son, at a later date, wrote the region on the backs. On early works, the artist also recorded a price, although few were ever exhibited for sale.

George Paginton

"Typical Northern Ontario" circa 1930, oil on canvas board, 8.5 x 10.5 inches

Because most of the paintings were never exhibited, framed or viewed in any way, on some of the works there may be some areas of paint loss and abrasions, cracking in the paint and splitting in wood panel boards from being stored stacked together, some for over 65 years. However, most are in excellent to very good condition.
As the artist was an illustrator for the Toronto Star, there are drawings and other works on paper that may have been created as part of his work at the newspaper but also as part of his personal oeuvre; some are included in the catalogue and others not.

The artist signed some of his work but largely not at all. After his death and when his work began to be represented by Odon Wagner Gallery in 1999, a stamp with the artist’s initials “GP” in a circular outline, both in red ink, was created and placed on some of the works in the lower left or right corner. Before George passed away, he signed some of the works on the verso. 

"The East Shore" circa 1948, oil on canvas, 20 x 25 inches 

Each painting and drawing listed in the catalogue has been given an inventory number and issued a Certificate of Authenticity signed by the artist’s son, Tony Paginton. There are some works that were sold during the artist’s life or shortly after the artist’s death that are not included in the catalogue and they may or may not be signed or stamped, nor will they have a Certificate of Authenticity (the number of paintings is unknown).

Wall Fiction is pleased to work with Tony Paginton and Roswita Busskamp to feature George's paintings for sale.


George Alfred Paginton - A Truthful and Rugged Artistic Impression of Canada April 08 2018

Inspired by the Canadian landscape like the Group of Seven, George Paginton's direct, truthful and rugged depiction of Canada served him as a personal escape. His intensity of colour and freedom of technique brought out a sense of beauty rarely seen because he preferred to paint for his own enjoyment.

Paginton, born in 1901, spent his early years as an orphan in England and arrived in Lindsay, Ontario at age 10 as farm labour. At age 18, he began his adult life in Toronto but never forgot his early childhood struggles and fears. Shortly after, he spent a term at the Ontario College of Art Summer School at Port Hope and studied under the direction of noted Canadian artists, J.W. Beatty, Frederick Haines, and Frederick Challener.

"Northern Ontario" circa 1952, oil on canvas board 

Like many recognized Canadian artists, Paginton became a commercial artist. His skills quickly developed and were rapidly noticed as he landed his first job at Photo Engravers and Electrotypers Ltd., of Toronto. Then, starting in 1927, he began a forty-three year-long and rewarding career at the Toronto Star. As an editorial illustrator, he covered events such as the construction of the Toronto subway and Toronto's City Hall, and the building of the St. Lawrence seaway. He began painting his own work in his free time.

Although roughly twenty years younger, Paginton was closely associated with the Group of Seven and even shared space in the Studio Building where many of the Group of Seven members worked. He became friends with A.Y. Jackson and was a pallbearer along with A.J. Casson at Jackson's funeral.

His newspaper work, where he learned to grasp situations quickly, and his enjoyment of painting outside, where he learned to capture light in a moment, enabled him to create small panels and canvases in a single sitting. And it is in these small format works where his love of Canadian landscape is revealed. As a plein air painter, his subject matter crossed the entire country from Newfoundland and New Brunswick, through Quebec and Ontario, to Alberta and British Columbia. Rarely did he rework his sketches into larger studio canvases but there are a few.

"Ice on the Shore" circa 1951, oil on canvas

In 1941, Paginton took over the studio of J.W. Beatty until he built his own home and studio on the shores of Lake Ontario where he continued to paint until his death in 1988. His studio is still set up as he liked it and where it remains a creative space now used by his artist son, Tony Paginton.

During his lifetime, Paginton rarely exhibited his works. But one of his only international exhibitions was held in New York just before he died where his work was featured beside some of Canada's most renowned artists: J.W. Beatty, Jack Bush, Lawren Harris, Illingworth Kerr and David Milne.

After his death in 1988, his family wanted others to see his love of Canada and they secured representation with Toronto gallerist Odon Wagner where three sold out gallery shows took place from 1999 to 2002, and his work sold for many year. 

George Paginton's work is held by many esteemed private collectors and as well as public and museum collections across Canada including the Art Gallery of Hamilton, Peel Art Gallery, Canada's Official Residences as part of the Crown Collection and the City of Toronto, 

Wall Fiction is pleased to work with the artist's family in offering a collection of his Canadian landscapes.

Private Art Sales and Auction Representation Through Wall Fiction January 17 2017

Wall Fiction has helped clients, through private sales and representation at auction, sell significant works by traditional, post-war and contemporary Canadian and international artists including works from Painters Eleven and The Group of Seven.

Some of the traditional artists we look for include: Sir Frederick Banting, J.W. Beatty, Franklin H. Carmichael, Emily Carr, Alfred Joseph Casson, Charles Comfort, Maurice Galbraith Cullen, Nicholas De Grandmaison, Berthe Des Clayes, Marc-Aurele Fortin, Clarence Gagnon, Lawren Stewart Harris, Prudence Heward, Edwin Headley Holgate, Yvonne McKauge Housser, Alexander Young Jackson, Francis (Franz, Frank) Hans Johnston, Paul Kane, Illingworth Kerr, Dorothy Knowles, Cornelius Krieghoff, Alfred Laliberté, Ozias Leduc, Maud Lewis, Arthur Lismer, John Lyman, J.E.H MacDonald, Manly Edward MacDonald, Henri Leopold Masson, Henrietta Mabel May, Helen Galloway McNicoll, David Brown Milne, James Wilson Morrice, Rita Mount, Laura Munz, Lucius O’Brien, George Alfred Paginton, W.J. Phillips, Robert Wakeham Pilot, Albert Henry Robinson, Tom Thomson, Frederick H. Varley, Frederick Arthur Verner, and more.

Some of the post-war and contemporary artists we look for are: Barbara Astman, David Bierk, Bertram Charles Binning, David Blackwood, Ronald Bloore, Molly Joan Lamb Bobak, Paul-Emile Borduas, Samuel Borenstein, Jack Bush, Oscar Cahen, Alex Colville, Ulysse Comtois, Greg Curnoe, Ken Danby, Louis De Niverville, Kim Dorland, Sorel Etrog, William Patterson Ewen, Joe Fafard, Gathie Falk, Marcelle Ferron, Clarence Gagnon, Roland Gissing, Betty Goodwin, John Hartman, Edward John Hughes, Gershon Iskowitz, John Kasyn, Dorothy Knowles, William Kurelek, Jean-Paul Lemieux, Rita Letendre, John Little, Attila Richard Lukascs, Jock MacDonald, Doris McCarthy, William (Bill) McElcheran, Jean Albert McEwen, John Meredith, David Milne, Guido Molinari, Norval Morrisseau, Kazuo Nakamura, Daphne Odjig, Luke Painter, Joseph Francis Plaskett, Christopher Pratt, Mary Pratt, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Goodridge Roberts, William Ronald, Jack Shadbolt, Arthur Shilling, Gordon Smith, Michael Snow, Takao Tanabe, Harold Barling Town, Joyce Wieland, Walter Yarwood and more.

International artists include: Gerrit Dou, Georgio Morandi, Laszlo Neogrady, Rembrandt, Joseph Henry Sharp, and many more.

Summer Gift Guide 2016 by Rebatezone Features Wall Fiction August 01 2016

Summer brings a huge number of reasons to celebrate whether it is warm sunshine or the blue skies.

Summer is the season where we love to go to the beach and jump in the cool water after a tiring week at work. It reminds us of the little pleasures in our life which we usually take for granted and it stresses upon the importance of taking a break once in a while to avoid burnout. Summer brings a large number of holidays with it. The entire season is usually filled with summer parties and celebrations. This onslaught of summer parties, birthdays and weddings raises the demand to find the perfect gift for all the special people in our lives.

We have prepared a list of some amazing gifts from a broad range to suit the needs of every price range, age and occasion. There is bound to be something for everyone here.

Art is what adds meaning to our life and makes it a joyful experience. A home filled with colors is a place which invites us and spending time in it is a blissful experience. This is an acrylic on canvas painting created by Colin Bowers – a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD). This is a painting you would definitely like in your house whether it is to enjoy the bright colors or to ponder over the meaning behind the image.

See Rebateszone's Summer Gift Guide 2016 

View Summer Breeze by Colin Bowers on Wall Fiction


Why is shipping art so expensive? July 24 2016

Wall Fiction would hate for the shipping fees to deter potential buyers from quality art at an affordable price. And despite what it may seem, we have tried and continually try to find the lowest shipping rates that guarantee safe delivery of artwork. We are not profiting from the shipping fees, in fact, many times the shipping costs seep into Wall Fiction’s profits which, of course, we need to operate the company and pay our team.

Additionally, unlike some online galleries that automatically add shipping costs to the price of the artwork, we do not. We strive to be 100% transparent about our costs and the true value of the artwork.

Last but not the least, the materials required to package artwork so that it arrives safely are expensive. Artwork requires a sturdy box to protect it against being crushed or punctured, bubble wrap to create a buffer between it and potential harm, plastic wrap to safeguard it against any potential water damage and often extra filling to keep the artwork from moving around within the box. These materials are more costly than you may realize. And large pieces or pieces made from unique materials may even require custom-built crates. Finally, some artwork sizes exceed regular post office service and must be sent using specialist carriers.

The number of separate materials is then added to the actual transportation costs; thus shipping artwork comes at a higher price that what many may think.

By writing about the shipping costs and not building them into our stated Wall Fiction prices for the actual items, we are exposing these packaging and shipping costs, and the responsibilities in owning original art.

As new collectors, protecting your art will only enhance your appreciation and enjoyment.


Integrating Large Artwork into Your Living Space September 21 2015

Designing your décor to include large artwork will make an impact that affects everything in a room including how people interact and feel in the space.

To help with integrating large artwork into a living space, Wall Fiction asked artist Lori Dell whose show Gates and Portals is currently showing on, and interior designer Janine Anderton of Urban Oasis Interiors for advice.

“You can approach integrating large artwork into a living space in a few different ways but I think the important point to make before we get into it is not to be afraid of large artwork. Many people are, but experienced artists, interior designers and art collectors are not. For their living spaces, they seek out large pieces,” says Janine.

From the artist’s perspective, Lori says that there is a difference between creating large artworks and smaller ones:

“Larger works involve an engaged physical and energetic component. It’s similar to a dance of mind/body/spirit. Whereas in smaller work, a specific and intimate focus comes into play. Large artworks add dynamic vitality to a space.”

Here are three ways to add large artwork to a room.

  1. Draw attention and make the artwork a focal point.

If you’re just starting to decorate and collect art, plan your room around a single large artwork. First, find a large artwork. Second, source décor items that echo the colours, textures, shapes and lines of the artwork.

“Fine art is timeless,” states Janine, ”so shop for art carefully and don’t be afraid to spend some money on it. You will be intuitively drawn to artwork and the lines and colours within. Take your time.”

When a large work is a focal point, “unexpected contrasts can heighten interest and attention. A singular prominent painting, in and of itself, can breath life into a room,” states Lori. Highlight colours found in the artwork and place them throughout the room to increase the power of the artwork.

For Lori’s large painting Petra as a focal point, Janine suggests:

  • Mid-century modern or 1960’s furniture – think Mad Men
  • Reclaimed wood and teak
  • Clean sleek lines and shiny surfaces to balance with the complex lines of the art
  • White low pile or shag carpets
  • Accents with blacks, greys, ivory and bronzes
  • Finishes with non-flowering plants
Lori Dell, Petra, 2009, 60 X 60 inches


Here are four rooms recently featured in Architectural Digest that would easily host Petra (shown above):

  1. Generate emotion in your living space.

Use large artwork to create a feeling of comfort, inspiration or intrigue. Add more than one piece from the same artist’s series and surround yourself with the affection and sentiment the works provide. Artwork from the same series will share colour, line, tone and subject, and hanging together can fill a room with emotion. Lori reminds us:

“All colour has a distinct energy. White can set a serene, pure tone; hot colour, vitality; organized shades, an earthy comfort.”

Related to Gates and Portals, two key colours in Lori’s work are blue and brown. Blue is known to slow metabolism and have a calming effect. Blue is also associated with cleanliness – think water, sky, air – and intellect. This is seen in Lori’s large painting Babylonia (shown below).

Lori Dell, Babylonia, 2014, 60 X 40 inches


Brown reflects the earth and signifies stability and a sense of belonging. It’s a refined colour that relates to quality. It’s warmth mixed with other tones and colours such as white, ivory and grey can reduce stress and add a sense of security to a room. See Petra pictured above.

Lori’s paintings have these emotions. They are sophisticated, intellectual, comforting, calming – and large. Lori feels that her large artworks in this series “evoke a curiosity, an intrigue and a whispering connection to our common histories.” They tell stories and comfort us in our living spaces.

  1. Create balance between architectural features and furnishings.

A large piece of art can create the illusion of a perfectly proportioned room. It can lengthen a room or heighten ceilings. Janine provides this example:

“A large piece of art can act as a headboard in a bedroom, but if the ceiling is low, chances are it will draw attention to the low ceiling. Use large artwork where it won’t overpower the room. Use proportion to create balance.”

Have your décor follow the lines and shapes within the art to create your desired sense of longer, shorter, higher, lower, bigger or smaller proportions than what they actually are.

Highly stylized with architectural features, rooms with large art can be transformed into creative and reflective living spaces. Just like what Lori has achieved in these large artworks featured in Gates and Portals, you can achieve in your rooms. If your room is void of architectural features, use Lori’s work to add them. 

For new collectors, selecting a large artwork can be more affordable than you might think. Using smaller works to create an impact in your space could be more costly than purchasing one large quality piece. As well, small works normally need framing whereas large work may not.

“Fine art doesn’t go out of style, but frames can,” Janine cautions. “Large art can be hung unframed thus making the wall become the frame. So if framing large work, keep it simple not to detract from the impact of the art.”

Some may think that wallpaper is a decorating path to consider in creating an interesting space. But specialty wallpaper can cost a lot of money too and you can’t move it into another room or take it with you if you change homes or cities, or your furnishings. When you buy artwork you love, you will never get tired of it and it will always match your décor.

Purchasing one large quality artwork can take your décor and new art collection farther than buying multiple small works or adding wallpaper to your living space. Large artwork can add depth, emotion and impact. Think long-term and spend your money on something you can keep and cherish.

Whether your rooms are gathering places like the living room or kitchen, or sacred and mystical like the bedroom, let large artwork create unique living spaces for you to continuously enjoy.


  • Ask for help.
  • Have a budget and a plan.
  • Always buy what you like and can afford.
  • Don’t worry if it matches the couch – if you love it, it will match everything.
  • When hanging large artwork, aim to have the middle of the artwork at eye level
  • Large artwork can be hung lower in rooms where people are almost always sitting; let it be enjoyed when sitting on the sofa without straining your neck.
  • Don’t be afraid of large artwork.
  • Bigger can be better for new collectors.

Visit today to view Gates and Portals, work by Lori Dell.

Wall Fiction - What's in a name? August 17 2015

The word fiction was created late in the 14th century as something invented and was derived from the Latin word fictiō – a fashioning – and the word fingere – something to form out of clay.

To us, art is fiction – something created by an artist’s hand and imagination, and the lives of the people who acquired it, hence our name: Wall Fiction.


Wall Fiction Launches Online March 31 2015

Announcing the launch of Wall - an online art gallery selling fine art on consignment and by developing artists

Wall Fiction mixes fine art consignment with unique finds and emerging artists, and provides an online art experience for both new and seasoned collectors.

We look for fine art by reputable artists known for creating quality work and emerging artists that we believe are worth watching. We resell original art from estates, owners wishing to downsize and collectors wanting a change.

Every piece of art comes with a story. We make every attempt to investigate provenance – the history of ownership of the work – as well as the interesting stories they tell – be it a story about the artist, the subject matter or how Wall Fiction came to it.

If you’ve acquired original art through an estate or need to downsize, we provide you with the avenue to generate some revenue but more importantly, find an owner who will love that artwork as much as the people who created it and first acquired it.

For the new collector, we offer an unpretentious and affordable entrance into art collection. By learning and browsing curated art online without the pressure of feeling like you need to say the right things, you can start building a collection at your leisure. We’ve done the preliminary work for you.

Visit today.

Wall Fiction is accepting fine art consignments. November 04 2014

If your original artwork has turned into wallpaper, it's time to get excited about a new piece.

We work with consignors to price and get their artwork listed for sale quickly. It doesn’t cost consignors anything to list their work with us.

 If you are interested in consigning an artwork, please email and include as much of the following information as possible:

  • Artist’s name
  • Title of artwork
  • Date of creation
  • Signature (Is it signed? How and where?)
  • Medium
  • Dimensions
  • Edition number, if applicable
  • Framed or unframed
  • Ownership history
  • Purchase date and price, if known
  • Quality images (front and back of artwork, signatures, labels or inscriptions, please keep each photo under 5MB)

Wall Fiction only accepts fine artwork which includes paintings and drawings (oil, acrylic, watercolour, gouache, tempera, ink, etc.), editioned prints (serigraphs, giclée, lithographs, engravings, etchings, woodcuts, etc.) and photography.

Wall Fiction will only consign artwork in good condition and reserves the right to refuse an artwork on consignment for any reason.

Review our terms listed under the Sell Art section in the main menu.