BRACEBRIDGE - By pen or key, Jack Hutton has etched out a living through art.
From artist to subject, Jack Hutton poses for charity.
LIFE AS ART. Famed local musician and journalist Jack Hutton is the next subject of the Bohemian Café and Gallery’s Celebrity-Charity Portrait Challenge. While artists gathered around him June 10 to sketch or photograph his likeness, he could not resist taking a few images himself. (Photo by Neil Etienne)
Now he’s the subject of it.
Bracebridge’s Bohemian Café and Gallery hosted the longtime journalist and famed ragtime piano player whose common stages include the RMS Segwun and the opera house in Gravenhurst. On June 10, as difficult as it may have been for the storyteller and his chimes, he sat patiently and relatively quiet for a group of four artists who will do what they can to best capture his lively spirit and character.
It represents the start of the fourth Celebrity-Charity Portrait Challenge hosted by the café and its owner Tammy Gravina, with funds headed to Hutton’s charity of choice in Bala.
The four artists, Bruce Tyner, Nancy Gray Ogle, Joyce Butler and Helene Adamson sat Hutton down in the café studio for about an hour to sketch and photograph their subject. Gravina explained they will now take those images back to their respective studios to create their art.
“We don’t know what they will be, even the subject doesn’t know,” she said. “It’s all part of the charm and the mystery of the event.”
The artists have until some point in early September to create their art in any medium of their choice. The pieces will be unveiled during a special gala early this fall, then auctioned off for Hutton’s charity.
He chose to have the funds directed to the Mustard Seed Fund at First Muskoka Congregational Church, north of Bala, a fund he and wife Linda created about 10 years ago to help local people “who through no fault of their own ran into trouble.”
Hutton, who has played piano at the church for some 20 years now, said it is a project that is near and dear to his heart.
“Often it’s people who can’t pay their heat in the winter or have run into financial trouble out of their control,” he said. The fund is an anonymous, few-questions-asked support to help people get through troubled times, he explained.
Hutton joins MP Tony Clement, Robin Clipsham’s flamboyant alter-ego Peaches and former NHL’er Kris King as the four celebrity subjects thus far. King’s art will be unveiled during a gala coming up in early July and his charity of choice is the South Muskoka Hospital Foundation.