The concept of Art and Found was created 7 years ago by Toronto artist Courtney Senior. Before she found her footing in the world of selling art, Courtney decided to find loving homes for her work by giving it away for free. She would package up her original artworks and leave them around different neighbourhoods in Toronto for people to find. Each artwork came with a note on the outside that read “Hello, I’m an original abstract painting in need of a loving home. FREE ART #ArtandFound.”
With the hashtag and personalized note on the inside, dozens of residents have contacted Courtney over the years sharing their excitement and gratitude for their new piece of artwork. Realizing the impact this had on the community and the keen interest of fellow artists to join in this initiative, Art and Found Day was born.
“Painting has always been both a creative and emotional outlet for me. In my early twenties, I started painting as a way to combat my crippling anxiety. We can never underestimate the power of flow state. I didn’t think much about my paintings at the time, because frankly they were terrible, but I remember how much my Dad loved them. Every time I came home to visit my parents, I saw another one of my paintings hung on the wall. He even had photos of them set as screen savers on his computer. It meant so much to me, especially since they were NOT good. It showed me that he was not only proud of me, but supportive of my creative endeavours which encouraged me to continue doing it even when my anxiety stopped. A few years later, I lost my Dad in a sudden accident. From that moment on, I spent every free minute I had painting. I used it as an opportunity to put all of the emotions I couldn’t express verbally into a form that helped my grieve and ultimately helped me heal. My Dad’s birthday was March 12th.” – Courtney Senior