Meet Melanie Desjardines
Melanie Desjardines and her husband were living in Alberta in the early 1990s. The economy was sluggish and Melanie’s husband, a sheet metal mechanic, decided to try a tentative move to Prince George where his father lived and owned a business. His dad was retiring, so the Desjardines bought his equipment and started a sheet metal business, which ended up taking off. They decided to make Prince George their permanent home in 1995 and have run their local metal fabrication business ever since.
Melanie was an artist, and with access to all of the sheet metal scraps she could ever want, she started creating art out of metal. Throughout the years she honed her craft while becoming involved in the local arts community. Starting an art gallery wasn’t really on her mind during those early years in Prince George, but when the couple purchased a commercial building several years after arriving, the thought began to take shape. When one of their tenants moved out two months after they took ownership, Melanie’s husband suggested she use the space to host an art show. It turned out to be a perfect space, and eventually, Melanie converted it to a permanent art gallery with a mission to promote the work of local artists. Melanie and her business Groop Gallery is co-located in the same building as fellow artist and entrepreneur Christina Watts of Ridge Side Art.
Melanie feels privileged to be in a position to publicize the incredible talent that resides within Prince George. “I feel like I am able to give back on a community level,” Melanie says. “Having been in business for years successfully, it’s a great place to be in.” She’s also proud to promote original artwork. “Owning original artwork is an enriching experience,” she states. “I think everyone should own original art!”
Original. Warm. Energetic.
Groop Gallery is a modern and contemporary art gallery specializing in showcasing local artists from Prince George and its surrounding region. Works encompass all forms of original visual art including paintings and artworks in all media: metal, concrete, wood, clay and stone sculpture and photography. Groop Gallery regularly spotlights new artists in rotating exhibitions and hosts frequent community cultural and special interest events, including specialty receptions and dinners.
Groop Gallery is committed to promoting and encouraging the local arts community, visual arts education and local amateur and professional artists. Guests who visit Groop Gallery regularly comment on the warm environment and the positive energy it exudes. With so much variation, regular additions of new pieces and the works of more than 30 local artists, visitors rarely come just once. Groop Gallery is a funky, uptown, downtown, artsy place to be, and tea is usually on!
Groop Gallery is a member of the Prince George Chamber of Commerce, the Community Arts Council and CARFAC (Canadian Artists Representation). Groop Gallery is a partner of Two Rivers Gallery and the Smithers Art Gallery.
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