The South Surrey and White Rock Art Society (SSWRAS) is a group of artists and supporters. Currently there are over 200 members at various skill levels in oil, acrylic, watercolor and mixed media. We’re a supportive group working together to share knowledge, create educational opportunities for our members and support those members who wish to sell their art.
The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.
– Pablo Picasso
What We Offer
We provide a wonderful opportunity to meet other artists, to improve skills through demos, workshops, and critiques by recognized professional artists. Our library, available for loan to all members, has a vast array of well-organized art reference books, videos and DVDs. A Full Colour Newsletter is sent to our members by email one a month, except over the months of July and August.
Throughout the year, we hold painting challenges for all members, which stretch participants to learn and try new ideas or themes. In good weather, there is our plein air painting group and an indoor version as well that runs from September to June.
We present substantial public art exhibitions, well-received by the community, two or three times a year. This gives members a chance to show and sell their work, and encourages artistic progress.
Thursday Nights are Free Painting Workshops which run from 6:30 to 9pm, in the Visual Arts Room. You must be a member to attend. Thursday Night Workshops run all year long.
Monthly Club meetings are at 7:00 p.m. at South Surrey Recreation and Arts Centre, 14601 20th Ave, Surrey, BC. Demonstrations by qualified artists at every meeting. We hold our meetings on the second Monday of every month except July and August. In the event the meeting date falls on a holiday, we would hold the meeting the following Monday.
We Give Back
The South Surrey and White Rock Arts Society (SSWRAS) recently donated $250,000 to the City of Surrey. The funds will complement a $2.1 million dollar cultural development project funded under the City’s “Build Surrey” program to create a new arts space in South Surrey.
“I want to thank the South Surrey and White Rock Arts Society for its generous financial contributions toward the new arts facility in South Surrey”, said Mayor Dianne Watts. “The new facility will enhance our vibrant arts and culture community, and provide new opportunities for artists and art lovers in our city.”
We have fulfilled our 5‐year commitment to Emily Carr. SSWRAS will now provide an Annual Entrance Scholarship for the Visual Arts Program at Kwantlen College, a scholarship for a local high school graduate.
SSWRAS provides opportunities for artists to meet one another, and to improve members painting skills through demonstrations, workshops, art shows and critiques by recognized professional artists, along with sales from a number of local businesses where we showcase out work.
The South Surrey and White Rock Art Society was founded in 1959 by a group of artists who wanted to paint together. The group, initially known as the ‘Painters’ Workshop’ became the ‘White Rock Painting and Sketch Club’ in 1962 and was registered as a non-profit society. Membership grew to over 100 members, more than half of whom lived outside the White Rock City limits. The name was changed again to the ‘White Rock and South Surrey Art Society’, to its current name in 1997 to reflect the changing demographic of the club.
In 1994, Sheila Symington and Kay Jenkins started the very successful ‘White Rock Summer School of the Arts’ as a branch of the parent organization. funds raised by the School were added to other moneys made by several garden parties held by the society. these well-attended parties also included art auctions. Further funding was provided from profits from the casino operations of the BC government.
The South Surrey and White Rock Art Society is presently composed of over 100 members working in various media and at many skill levels. We have two lifetime members, Sheila Symington who has been a member since 1972 and Lora Armbruster who joined in 1997. The Society endeavors to promote appreciation of, and participation in, the visual arts among its members and in the community. Our members stretch their skills while having lots of fun!
Membership fees for next year will be $60 per person. Fees are payable at the first meeting in September every year, but we would recommend paying by PayPal on the website as membership has been full for this year and it is capped at 200 members. Once membership is full you can go on a waiting list for the next year. Membership is Full for this year.
SSWRAS Members Volunteer In The Community
Several SSWRAS members have volunteered to help a teacher in an alternate school in South Surrey.
She is teaching a small group of teenage girls to help them complete their high school education. She readily admits that art is not her strongest suit but she is determined that the girls should have the opportunity to explore artistic themes.
Helping others to develop their artistic skills is one of the goals of SSWRAS and we are proud of the members who volunteered their time.