In 1933 debris from an explosion flew through the window the Vancouver Cafe and Grill, a restaurant Tom Carter’s grandfather owned on the Hastings strip. It was the end of his grandfather’s restaurant, but years later it would be the starting point for Tom’s investigation into Vancouver’s nightlife history. Tom started collecting artifacts from The Pantages - the theatre across the street from his grandfather’s restaurant that had been bombed by the Chicago mob. He started painting scenes from the city’s nightlife district as well - neon lights, rainy streets, and Vancouver’s once vibrant Vaudeville performance culture.
But the history Tom started rescuing is at risk of disappearing without a trace. Real estate development, old age, and fading memories make it difficult to conserve the city’s past. Tom is collecting stories and archiving Vancouver’s nightlife history - all while trying to recreate the scenes he feels on the canvas.
You can view Tom’s artwork at his website here: http://www.tomcartergallery.com/