Random Gifts of Art

A social adventure spawned by giving free art to strangers.

Two people, two obstacles, infinite possibilities.

Tim Holmes and Garret Garrels collaborate

The success of the Random Gifts of Art project has led to a series of  iterations that continue to unfold in surprising ways, including:

Random Gifts of Art: LIVE!

Live show

An international art project comes home:
Speaker/storyteller Garret Garrels and artist Tim Holmes weave this multi-dimensional art project into a live comedy performance premiering in Helena. This performance supported in part by a grant from the Montana Arts Council, an agency of the State Government.
  • Random Gifts of Art book:  The tale of the project, some of the drawings and the stories it has engendered. Each numbered copy of the book is meant to be passed on to accumulate a story of its own.
The Book

• The Facebook page:  Anyone can browse through and look at the art and the remarkable stories of the gifts involved.

• RandomGiftsofArt.com  Each recipient of a gift (art or book) can attach their own story of the gift to the individual piece and all art and books are searchable. All other aspects of the project link out from here, also.

Live show
Tales of Whoa, TV series

  • A TV show, Tales of Whoa:  We developed an idea for a docu-comedy TV series, called Tales of Whoa, a 30 minute, 5-episode program that premiers on Montana public TV, and is available on YouTube and Vimeo. One of the episodes explores Random Gifts of Art.

 Live Performances

Garret was requested to speak about the project in several addresses in Europe.
Sweden speech

Garret gives away a drawing in a live presentation in Sweden.

Tour: Starting with a performance in Helena, we launch a show that we'll tour in Europe in 2016.

Project Statement

International speaker/storyteller, Garret Garrels, collaborates with world-renowned sculptor Tim Holmes, to create a multi-dimensional art project called Random Gifts of Art. It started as a simple idea: Garret would give away Tim’s drawings to random strangers as he traveled around the U.S. and Europe. But he didn't know how much it would end up transforming his life.

In our hurried lives of deadlines and destinations, what would it be like to move through the day knowing that every stranger might carry for you a transformative story? What if we all knew that everyone carried a unique and available gift? How would you approach a stranger? What would you say?


A gift drawing, "She Came Without Instructions", graphite by Tim Holmes

 TV episode in "Tales of Whoa":

Tales of Whoa is a docu-comedy series created by Tim Holmes and Garret Garrels in several half-hour episodes filmed for TV. The show is a 'rehearsal' for what is to be a live show (that never actually occurs). Face it, we're quite aware that most of the really great stuff happens in rehearsal- the extra jokes, the screw-ups, the misunderstandings that make life interesting, even the opportunity to talk about the things that can't be talked about on air! Each episode tackles a different subject: women's empowerment, giving gifts, the artist's struggle, etc.

This episode visits the Random Gifts of Art project.

Grizzly in the Studio

"Grizzly in the Studio", pencil by Tim Holmes, one of the gifts.

For more on the project visit:


Timeless art for troubled times

Creative Commons Copyright • 2015 • Tim Holmes Studio