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Hot Shopping: Inspiring Artists

The owner of Winnipeg’s largest art supply store focuses most on one thing: “Everybody’s a potential artist.”  With her own background in business arts, Janeen Balenovic took over the 35-year-old Artists Emporium 13 years ago, seeing it as a fun opportunity to utilize her people skills. Now, as a retail curator, she strives to inspire the artistic spirit with every part of her 12,000 sq. ft. store, the largest of its kind between Toronto and Vancouver.  “It has to be kept new and fun,” she says, “and people love to touch and feel, and to try things out, so we try to maintain a hands-on feeling for the store.” Beyond the store’s walls, Balenovic fosters the arts community with material and financial support to such local groups as the Winnipeg Sketch Club and the Manitoba Society of Artists.

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