Springbank artist takes part in Stampede Quick Draw
A Springbank resident was one of 12 artists whose work helped raise roughly $10,000 for high school students wishing to further their art career.
For the eighth year in a row, Ursula Pagenkopf participated in the Calgary Stampede Western Art Show’s Quick Draw event on July 12, in which participating artists completed an original work in the span of an hour before the pieces were auctioned off to the highest bidder.
Pagenkopf’s piece, an acrylic painting entitled “Weiners and Marshmallows” sold for $800, two-thirds of which went to the Stampede’s Grade 12 Western Art Scholarship.
Proceeds from other pieces, including paintings, sculptures and carvings, also went to the scholarship fund.
“I love doing the Quick Draw,” said the self-taught artist, who has been seriously pursuing her art career for the past 25 years.
“It’s a challenge to me, I get to meet people and have people see me do my art and it helps out local students.”
She said being involved in the Stampede is an excellent way to garner interest in one’s work, adding she regularly receives orders and requests to see more of her work at the event.
“The Stampede Western Showcase, I feel, is the No. 1 place to have your art displayed,” she said.
“There is an international audience and lots of people going through. It can bring a lot of exposure and good things. I get so much good feedback from that.”
Pagenkopf has lived in Springbank with her husband, Erhard, for the past 37 years. The couple came to North America from Germany when Pagenkopf received a contract to work in New York City for two years. After her contract expired, her sister convinced her to visit Alberta.
“We decided we didn’t want to go back to Germany,” said Pagenkopf.
“We just found it so interesting here.”
The couple lived in Calgary for two years before settling down in Springbank, and Pagenkopf has since become a member of the Springbank Creative Arts Club, the Calgary Sketch Club and Calgary’s oldest art club, Interpretations Calgary, of which she is also the treasurer.
Pagenkopf described her work as a unique hybrid of folk and naïve art, focusing heavily on winter and western themes.
“I enjoy painting because it allows me to stay at home and work on my own schedule,” she said, adding she loves to share her stories with others.
“People can relate to the stories I’m telling in my paintings. Most are set in the winter because it’s my favourite time of year, mostly because of Christmas. They are very homey paintings and comforting for people.”
Pagenkopf regularly donates proceeds from the sale of her art to the Alberta Children’s Hospital and the Haitian orphanage from which her granddaughter was adopted.
Every year, she also donates pieces to both the Rotary Club of Calgary and Unicef.
“We’ve been blessed so much and its important to give back to those who are less fortunate,” she said.
“We should all make an effort and do what we can.”
Examples of Pagenkopf’s work are available on the Calgary Sketch Club’s website at www.calgarysketchclub.com/artists