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Theft closes show

Call it a sign of the times or a sign that Calgary really is a large metropolitan city. Either way, it’s a disappointment that art was stolen from an exhibition, forcing it to fold, the curator said.

Call it a sign of the times or a sign that Calgary really is a large metropolitan city. Either way, it’s a disappointment that art was stolen from an exhibition, forcing it to fold, the curator said.

Paul Hughes, art director for the O1 Group Exhibition, said the theft of four pieces of art from O restaurant in Marda Loop forced the closure of the rest of the exhibit, which only debuted a week ago.

“There was a breach of security and to protect the other pieces of art, we really have no choice. It’s really unfortunate,” Hughes said, adding there were about 35 pieces of art by 18 artists in the show. He said the four pieces — two pieces each from two artists — were stolen sometime over the weekend during the exhibition.
He is hopeful video surveillance and police assistance will help recover the stolen items valued at more than $3,300.

“I think if someone is out there trying to sell art, it might be an indication. They are fairly unique pieces of art, quite large and brilliant,” Hughes added.

At first, 22-year-old artist Jeremy Pavka said he was oddly flattered his two items were stolen.

“I was intrigued that someone enjoyed them enough to want to take them, but that novelty wore off and now I am thinking about the money,” he said, adding he makes a living as an artist while he finishes his ACAD degree.

“That’s how I pay the bills, and I guess it affects the pocketbook.”

Calgary police say targeted art thefts are relatively rare in the city — there have been only two in the past year, not including this incident.

“It’s extremely rare and unheard of,” added Hughes. “I’m not sure if it’s the sign of the times we’re in, but it’s not usually a normal occurrence in the city.”

 
 
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