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Rockwood artist celebrates Canada 150 with art show

Canada 150 - John A. Root of Rockwood is holding a Canada 150-inspired art show at the East Side Library in Guelph. He has one acrylic or pastel painting from every province and territory in Canada on display. Each piece is $150 plus $30 for the optional frame.      Photo by Jaime Myslik

Rockwood artist celebrates Canada 150 with art show

by Jaime Myslik

GUELPH - A Rockwood artist is celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary with an art show featuring paintings from across the county. 

John A. Root, 70, a retired Rockwood Centennial Public School teacher, began painting three years ago. 

“I was in the jewelry business for 16 years after I taught and I was selling as well as some designing,” Root said. “Then I just started this so this is a third career.” 

Root is currently holding a show at the East Side Library in Guelph with scenes from every province and territory in Canada to celebrate Canada 150.

“I’ve been to a lot of them, not all of them,” Root said. “A couple of those I saw a photograph online and I ... asked permission to use it, some people I asked permission and they said ‘no’ unless you want to pay me. 

“But some people said yes, if you make it it’s your work. So I changed it a little bit and there you go.”

One of the paintings of Hopewell Rocks in New Brunswick is a reflection of a photo Root took before he was married. He’s been married for 44 years. His pieces are either acrylic or pastel.

Root was inspired to do the show by a group of former students who are also artists. 

“A number of years ago some of my former students decided they wanted to paint and we’d challenge ourselves,” he said. 

“We’d post a picture or one of our photographs and then the four or five of us would paint it and then when everybody was done then you’d post it and it’s interesting to see the different interpretations of that particular photograph.”

A newer member of the group from Edmonton said her personal goal was to paint something from every province or territory in Canada’s 150th year. 

“I thought, okay I could do that and that’s how it started,” Root said.

Root’s paintings are displayed throughout the East Side Library in Guelph for August. Each painting is $150 with an additional $30 for the optional frame.

For more information or to purchase a painting visit, phone 519-856-4143 or email

August 11, 2017


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