Art auction set for Jan. 19
January 11, 2013

joand       Portrait of Joan De Wolfe.

Just weeks before she died last May, Joan DeWolfe added another painting to her incredible collection to reflect on as she was dying. Art made her happy and it filled her modest Halifax home with beauty and creativity.

“After 30 years of collecting, her house was full,” said Jeannie Hogan, a friend.

Added Judith Rickard, another friend of Joan’s: “There were six paintings in the bathroom at least.”

On Saturday, Jan. 19, Joan’s art collection goes on the auction block. Proceeds will benefit NSCAD University and Brigadoon Children’s Camp Society for the education of children in the arts. The auction will take place at Studio 21 Fine Art Gallery at its new location at 1273 Hollis Street.

“Joan surrounded herself with wonderful art and her passion lives on with her generous support for young talent,” said Linda Hutchison, director of University Relations at NSCAD University.

The auction promises to double as a celebration of Joan’s life. Most of the paintings, sculptures and ceramics will be sold through a silent auction; bids for the first lot with close at 8:30 p.m. and bids for the second lot at 9:30 p.m. As well, at 8:30 p.m., there will be a live auction of a selection of artworks conducted by Costas Halavrezos.

The auction items will be available for view on Friday, Jan. 18 and Saturday, Jan. 19 at Studio 21 during regular business hours.

“She loved art. She loved fashion. She had a real aesthetic and true style,” said Jeannie. “If she could have come, she would have enjoyed every single second of it.”

Sitting on a bench in Studio 21, wearing gorgeous scarves that once belonged to Joan, the two friends and estate executors talked and laughed to remember their vivacious friend, who died at the age of 63 after a nine-month battle with cancer. During her career, Joan worked at various investment firms. In her last years, she worked as an executive assistant for Addictions Services at the Nova Scotia Department of Health.

Her art collection was contemporary and colourful, and encompassed a wide range of styles including portraits, landscapes and still life paintings. She knew many of the artists whose work she enjoyed, meeting them at exhibition openings. In particular, she was a fan of young artists as they embarked on their careers.

“Joan’s generosity will allow children to experience the arts in Brigadoon’s natural environment,” said Dave Graham, executive director of Brigadoon Children’s Camp Society. “We are extremely grateful for her support.”

All are welcome to attend the auction on Saturday evening, January 19. Please RSVP at

For those who cannot attend in person, please e-mail to request a reserve bid form. The deadline for receipt of reserve bids is 9 a.m. on Friday, January 18.


 mcAvoy This painting by Marilyn McAvoy is one of more than 40 paintings in the Jan. 19 auction.