The name of this local downtown business is intriguing, to say the least. Starving Artist, also known as Starving Artist Café, or Starving Artist Gallery & Gifts, is a unique boutique featuring a wide variety of local art. You will find pottery, jewelry, paintings, prints and more.
Co-owner Buff Slaney explained over the phone that this downtown shop is really one of a kind, specializing in hand-crafted artisanal products. Although it may be referred to as a café, the space is more of a gallery that allows you to browse and purchase items from local artists. Within the 6000 square footage of Starving Artist, you can find renowned artists such as Eric Goggin, Tim Isaac, and Ginette Melanson – who made the logo for the Congrès Mondiale Acadien – among others.
Words cannot describe what it feels like to enter Starving Artist. The experience is worth the visit – and you are welcome to do just that. Visitors can look around, learn more about artisans from the Moncton area, and immerse themselves in a world of creative splendour.
Their hours of operation change seasonally, but they are open every day, usually beginning in the late morning until mid-afternoon. No appointments are necessary.
When asked how it all got started, Buff explained that her partner has always been passionate about sharing other people’s art and had worked to create a similar business in the past. When they saw the space at 80 Assumption Blvd became available, they felt it was a sign to jump in and bring something unique to the downtown Moncton scene.
If the location does not ring a bell, a mural right beside it surely will.
Buff, who is originally from Cape Breton, NS, moved to Calgary, AB after she graduated from St-FX and did as was expected of her. “I was an accountant. I never really enjoyed it. I never fit the mould,” shares Buff. She decided to move back to the East Coast, specifically to Moncton where her sister was living, with the intention of changing career paths. She wanted to do anything but accounting. Although she moved not knowing what she was going to do, she knew she would be able to figure it out; that she would not starve.
It is there, perhaps, that the inspiration came from for the name of the business and the idea that artists do not necessarily always have the means to make ends meet. And that is just one of the many reasons Buff and her partner created Starving Artist.
When asked how the community can better support Starving Artist, as well as local artisans, Buff responded:
“Stop and think before you spend your money in big-box stores. [Ask yourself,] ‘can I get that at my local small business?’ I think that applies to all small businesses. It’s especially important to support the artists, especially with the Craft Shows not happening this year.”
The consignment gallery also has a studio space, where classes are offered. These take place on Saturdays, where you can learn various art techniques such as stained glass, painting (watercolour, acrylic), pottery, and more. The owners of Starving Artist teach some of the classes, and they also bring in other artists to teach classes.
About the author :
Carmen LeBlanc is a local blogger here in Moncton, NB. She works as a content creator to help local businesses and brands to share their story and to make connections. Her blog Tiny Adventures Journey focuses on supporting local, minimalism, and sustainability. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram or subscribe to her blog by clicking here: www.tinyadventuresjourney.com