The Raw Sugar cafe in Chinatown Ottawa closed it's doors over the weekend. Raw Sugar opened in fall 2008, right across from my favourite dim sum place. It was one of the first independently owned coffee shops, and, perhaps opened the doors in the city as a number of others arrived within a few years. In 2009 I held a solo exhibit (Gigafauna) at Raw Sugar, and 2010 held my first Confectionaries exhibit. For the past few years I've been participating in the annual holiday craft walk hosted by the Raw. The establishment was beloved by many across the city, but particularly in the Chinatown neighbourhood, which boasts many a restaurant, but no other cafes. The Raw Sugar was always the first place I would suggest for meetings or catching up with old friends, or bringing someone from out of town.
The owner, Nadia, informed me they would be closing down a week before the doors closed. She asked if I had done a drawing of the place, which I hadn't. Once I heard the news, I quickly got to work, producing two illustrations of the now iconic establishment. Although we still do not have snow in Ottawa, the last night I was there, there was a brief snowfall.
Prints will be made available soon.