by Morri Mostow

Trompe l’oeil boutique reopens in more central location

Boz’Art has reopened under a new name, in a new location. After a busy and successful first season testing the local market, architectural-designer and master trompe l’oeil artist Maddia Esquerre and her brother Jean-Yves decided they had a viable business. Unable to incorporate the Boz’Art name (it was already taken), they opted for AGUR, Arts & Décor Inc. and moved into new premises within sight of the four commercial corners of Knowlton to take advantage of the constant flow pedestrian traffic. Agur means hello in Basque. The Esquerres hail from the Basque region of France.

Their bright, airy studio-gallery is divided in two. The front area showcases Maddia’s original work in gold leaf, trompe l’oeil painted recreations of classical friezes, rare marbles, grained wood and ornamental mouldings, as well as lacquered sushi tables created by Jean-Yves and intricate framed collages by their friend Brigitte de Souza. The back section, open to view, is the studio proper, where visitors can watch the artists at work.

“Throughout the year, we also plan to host shows by other artists,” says Maddia Esquerre. “Our goal is to create lots of activity to attract local residents as well as tourists.”

In response to popular demand, Maddia, a former silver medallist from the Van de Kelen Institute in Brussels (the world-renowned trompe l’oeil school), will offer five specialized art classes for small groups starting in January: drawing, acrylic trompe l’oeil, faux wood, faux marble, and gold leafing and patinas. Space is limited (maximum eight per class) so interested students should contact her as soon as possible.

AGUR, Studio-Galérie is located at 294 Knowlton Road in downtown Knowlton. Telephone (450) 243-0620.



Mysteria, a Sutton boutique that marries the old with the new, invites the public to a wine-and-cheese reception on November 3 and 4, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., to celebrate its official reopening. Mysteria recently moved to larger premises next door to its former location. With triple the floor space, owner Monique Lussier will be able to display large pieces of antique furniture and expand her offerings of Native Canadian artwork, including dream catchers (hanging mobiles of deer hide, sinew, glass beads and duck feathers, designed to filter out the bad dreams and keep the good ones), decorated walking sticks, birch-bark backpacks, ornamental birch-bark canoes, birch-bark fishing baskets, and beaded jewelry and accessories. Lussier also carries numbered lithographs of Native artwork from tribes in Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec.

Lussier first opened Mysteria just over a year ago as an outlet where she and other local artisans could sell their work. A former Montrealer, Lussier studied fashion design in New York, owned a vintage clothing shop in Montreal in the 70s and has been living in the Sutton area for 15 years. She sews Victorian lampshades, tapestry shoe bags, pouches, cosmetic purses and pillows, as well as hanging tapestry organizers to display earrings and broaches. “I love antiques and old things,” says Lussier, who plans to introduce her own line of women’s clothing next spring “with touch of Victoriana lace and some innovations with scarves.”

In addition to medieval-style jewelry, greeting cards and other pieces created by Eastern Townships artisans, Mysteria offers an eclectic mix of antique glassware and furniture, Victoriana (both old and new), amber jewelry by Polish artisans, and even some vintage clothing, including a 100-year-old beaver top hot. Look for Lussier’s Christmas corner featuring old-style Christmas decorations.

During the month of November, every purchase entitles shoppers to an entry in a prize draw for a dinner for four from Sunny Brae (a Sutton take-out deli), an amber-and-silver necklace or a Christmas-tree skirt (an original creation by Lussier).

Mysteria is located at 20 Principale Nord (in the place sutton mall) in sutton. Telephone (450) 538-6565. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday to Monday.


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