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Tireless arts promoter honoured

Marianne Garrah was presented with a Fine and Performing Arts award on Dec. 22 for her work to promote the arts through initiatives such as the Tuktu Prayers travelling exhibit and the Artists on the Rails program (just to name a few of her endeavours).

“Marianne displays the true spirit of volunteering, bringing ideas, time, energy and money to valuable artbased projects which affect Jasper’s artists,” wrote the individuals who nominated her for the award.

In their nomination package they mentioned some of Garrah’s most recent endeavours, including the Artists Studio Walk this past September and the importance of the Tuktu Prayers show in raising awareness for the plight of the woodland caribou in Jasper National Park.

“She feels strongly about promoting Jasper through the arts and contributes much of her time and money,” wrote the nominees.

Garrah is the owner of Artists Own, a framing and art services store in the Jasper industrial park and has also, in the past, been a gallery owner.

She is also one-half of a partnership that created Digital Time Machine Inc. (DTMI) in 2002 — a company formed to pursue arts promotion through creative multimedia productions.

This partnership grew out of her organization and website, Leather Pass, through which she had been promoting artists through studio tours and interactive venues.

According to the DTMI website, over the years Leather Pass Productions has been responsible for the sponsorship and promotion of live music events, the establishment of permanent exhibition space in the Jasper and promoting awareness of the arts through guest speakers, art auctions, workshops, road trips and wine nights.

Under the partnership of DTMI, Garrah and her partner David Baker (Delphinus 18 Productions) created the documentary Dreamers and Doers, 100 Years of Arts and Culture in Alberta, which earned her a finalist position for the 2005 ALTO (Alberta Tourism) Tourism and Media Award.

The 48-minute production filmed in 2004 for Alberta’s Centennial was done in a storytelling style and featured artists of all mediums and backgrounds from across Alberta.

Other accolades that DTMI has earned over the years include being a finalist for the 2006 Alberta Motion Picture Industry Awards and the 2006 TIAC National Awards for Tourism Excellence for their interactive travel planning website, Great Western Muse Cruise (

In the past, Gar rah was also nominated for a Governor General’s Award.

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