Our Prize Winners in the News – February 2023 Edition

Looking back on 25 years. Our past prize-winners reflect…..

John Dickson – Artist Prize 2002

“I received the award in 2002 so a lot has happened since then. Some highlights are inclusion in Beyond/In Western New York (a solo exhibition at Big Orbit in Buffalo, 2010), an exhibition at the Young Gallery project space at the AGO in 2011 (Cold War), and Music Box for the 2013 Nuit Blanche, NetherMind, the artist collective that formed in the early 1990s and reformed in 2012, and has since had four exhibitions, the last one was this past November at St Anne’s Church here in Toronto. I have also completed two large public commissions: Frontier (2009) for the West Toronto Railpath, and a series of sculptures for the Sesquicentennial Trail at Downsview Park (2019).”

Sameer Farooq – Artist Prize Finalist 2022

“It is incredible that the TFVA exists; that there is a group that truly believes in the work and ideas of artists. As a TFVA award recipient, your support has meant the world to me. It has motivated me to keep developing my practice, sharing my work with audiences I would not have been able to reach on my own, and, above all, it has introduced me to an incredible community of art supporters in my own city. The TFVA’s sustained support for our city’s artists is invaluable and helps build strong foundations for a vibrant and exciting art scene. I am deeply grateful for the support, motivation and fantastic conversations.”

Akin – Project Support Award 2017

“In 2017, Akin was fortunate enough to receive funding from TFVA to allow us to realize a project that we had been planning with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, specifically with the clients of their Youth Addiction and Concurrent Disorders Service. This project enabled a collaboration between artists from Akin’s studio community and these young people and their families and the use of artistic expression to confront challenges in a healthy manner through the exploration of photography, ceramics and weaving. We’re so grateful to the TFVA for making possible this formative and impactful collaboration.”

Oliver Pauk, Founder and Director of Akin.

Michèle Pearson Clarke –  Artist Prize Finalist 2019

“The 2019 Finalist Artist Prize was my first significant award and it was especially meaningful to be recognized by my own local community. And as someone who has pursued being an artist later in life, it was wonderfully validating to receive this vote of confidence in my practice from the TFVA. Since then, I’ve served as Toronto’s second Photo Laureate (2019-2022), had my work collected by the National Gallery of Canada, and most recently, I’ve joined Toronto Metropolitan University as an Assistant Professor of Photography. I’m truly grateful for all of this support and recognition of my work.”


Winter is drawing to a conclusion………
Our Prize Winners have been busy throughout. Read to learn about their current and future undertakings.

Esmaa Mohamoud – Artist Prize 2019
Camille Turner  Artist Prize Finalist 2018

Esmaa Mohamoud’s work was featured in the February 3 Art Canada Institute (ACI) newsletter themed, Canadian Black Art Matters.

Esmaa’s work, A Seat Above the Table (Warren Moon), 2018, pays homage to Warren Moon (b.1956), who was the only black quarterback inducted into both the National Football League and the Canadian Football League Halls of Fame. Mohamoud’s intention was to explore the lack of black representation and the omission of black achievements within cultural institutions and discourses.

Camille Turner’s work was also featured in the same ACI newsletter. The piece, from the Wanted series by Camille Turner and Camal Pirbhai, draws on Canada’s neglected history of slavery. Lowcanes, 2011–18, takes its title from a 1775 advertisement placed in a Canadian newspaper that describes a fugitive slave of the same name. The advertisement specifies that the man was wearing “a light coloured short coat with a red cape to it” when he escaped slavery.

Click Here to read the ACI newsletter

Nep Sidhu – Artist Prize 2017

Nep Sidhu’s work The Look of Love. Confirmation B, 2014 was one of ten Canadian artworks featured in the ACI Newsletter of February 10 entitled the Look of Love: 12 Canadian Works. Nep’s piece is a tribute to his late mother and is based on a letter he wrote to her, after her passing, expressing his everlasting love and his dream of reuniting in the next life.

Click Here here to read the ACI newsletter

Nadia Bellerique – Artist Prize 2015

Nadia Bellerique is included in the collective exposition L’Irrésolue, at FRAC, Le Plateau, Île de France, Paris. Her particular work is entitled Slice. The six artists employ a wide range of media and techniques and share an appetite for mystery, secrecy, the uncertain and the invisible as much as the unspeakable. The show runs from January 26 through April 23, 2023.

Click Here to learn more

Michèle Pearson Clarke – Artist Prize Finalist 2019

Michèle Pearson Clarke has a solo show from March 10- June 17 at the Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art, Winnipeg.Manitoba. The exhibition is entitled Quantum Choir. Michèle, who is a seasoned photo artist and filmmaker, has expanded her repertoire within the medium over the years, and this exhibition takes expansion further. For the first time, Clarke’s work has spatially transformed the exhibition space with objects, painted walls, and a built architectural apparatus for an enveloping four-channel video.

Click Here to learn more

Note that an artist talk is planned for-March 11. Check back to the website above for details which were not available at the time of printing this newsletter.

Winnie Truong – Project Support 2021

Winnie Truong ‘s work was featured by STEPS Public Art, a 2017 Project Support Award. Her work is in a new show, Field Notes, at the Varley Art Gallery. This exhibition brings together historical sketches by F. H. Varley with contemporary animation and drawings by Winnie Truong. Although their bodies of work and approaches to art making are vastly different, both artists share a desire to engage with the natural world.

Click Here to learn more

Click Here to register for the virtual Lunch and Learn Artist Talk, on March 15

the Plumb – Project Support 2022

Momus, an online arts publication recently posted an article by Ella Dawn McGeough about the undertakings at the Plumb. In the email announcing the piece, publisher, Sky Gooden, said that the Plumb “has quickly become one of the most vital spaces in Toronto, running critically against the conservativism of [the city’s] artistic ecosystem”.  At the Plumb, “a strong sense of ethical commitment to community runs deep”.

Click Here to read the article

Akin Collective – Project Support 2017

Akin is a Toronto-based arts organization that provides creative studio space as well as arts-based programming. Their studios provide a working environment that maintains a friendly and inspiring atmosphere where people can work on creative endeavours and entrepreneurial undertakings of all kinds. They have many locations throughout Toronto and are very active in the arts community here!

Click Here to review their calendar of upcoming events

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