Out of more than 1,200 artists from 49 countries participating in International Art and Found Day on Tuesday, Airdrie artist Josie Hoisington is among them. 

Art and Found Day is a global movement dedicated to artists coming together to drop thousands of free artworks within their local communities for neighbouring residents to find. Originally, founded by Canadian artist Courtney Senior, the mission of Art and Found Day is to unite the world through art, encourage creativity and give back to local communities.'

Hoisington shared that she has the whole day planned out, starting with making deliveries early in the morning. This is the first year she has participated in the worldwide movement.

"I've got four pieces [that] I'm going to put out around Airdrie and then I've got some very book-worthy pieces that I'm going to leave at the [Airdrie Public Library]. I want to talk about it on my social media and with people that I know," she said. "I think it's important because art is something that brings people together. I think in Airdrie, we're so fortunate because we've got such a diverse creative community."

When asked if she could give a hint as to where the art pieces may be found around the city, Hoisington said she would give hints on her Instagram account and encouraged everyone to venture out to see them.


A post shared by Josie Hoisington Art (@josie.hoisington.art)

Hoisington underscored the importance of art in one's everyday life, saying that it's more than just admiring aesthetics.

"I think for the artists, it's really important because, as an artist, it's really hard sometimes to find your voice and to be able to put yourself out there. An event like this is impactful for an artist who might not have much exposure, or the confidence, maybe to do a show. It helps develop that communication piece for them," she explained. "But then I think also it helps the public. Art is so much more than just what meets the eye. I can speak for myself - in terms of a journey of healing and understanding; and for people to understand that there's so much they can accomplish through art."

The Airdrie artist said she began dabbling in art when she was in school, assuming art class would be an easy credit. It turns out, it became a life-long passion.

"It's just never gone away. I've gone through ebbs and flows as I [continue] to grow. I primarily did pencil and acrylics and then almost a decade ago, when my mom was diagnosed with cancer; I had a hard time getting through that and my art kind of came back," Hoisington said. "At that point, I was doing a lot of mixed media, which was very forgiving."

When the pandemic hit, she also had a significant foot surgery she had to get through, and as always, art was there for her.

"[That surgery] left me in much in a chair for about 12 weeks and I taught myself how to watercolour. Now, I sit and I paint just about every day and it has become my go-to when I'm having a rough day or just need somewhere to escape."

The concept of Art and Found started in 2015 in Toronto, Canada when Senior would leave free artwork around the city and share it on social media. Since then, artists around the world have joined the movement. 

“Art and Found Day isn't just an event; it's a movement to infuse our lives with art's boundless energy. Art bridges divide, sparks conversation, and kindles the spirit of discovery,” Senior said.

The movement has also sparked the support of prominent artist brands, including DeSerres, a large Canadian retailer of arts and crafts supplies and Smartist, an app that enables artists to create realistic in-situ mock-ups of their artwork.

Other local artists participating in the day include Airdrie artists Brenda Morris, Carla Tree, Kyla Raiche-Steele, as well as Samantha Duguay. Carstairs artists Gwen Day and Karen Pedersen are also participating, along with Cochrane artists Carol Schmick and Wanda Quigg. An interactive map of all the artists participating is available online

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