Posted by Open Studio

2015-16 Open Studio Scholarship & Fellowship Recipients

Open Studio Announces 2015-16 Scholarship & Fellowship Recipients

Open Studio, Canada’s leading printmaking centre, is pleased to announce the 2015-16 Open Studio Scholarship and Fellowship recipients. One scholarship and three fellowships have been awarded to artists of merit, selected by a jury of artists and arts professionals. Open Studio’s programs support artists at various stages of their careers and are especially vital for young emerging artists. Writing about the incredible difference that a scholarship at Open Studio made for her as an artist, Heather Smith (2012-13 Don Phillips Scholar) states: “The first year after school is the real test for young artists, who find it difficult to continue creating when they no longer have deadlines to meet, but instead have less time, space, money and support, and more commitments competing with their art practice…The Don Phillips Scholarship was exactly the help I needed to ‘pass’ my first year as an artist out of school. I am confident now that I have the skills and work ethic I will need to continue a full art practice throughout my life.”

The 2015-16 Open Studio Scholarship and Fellowship recipients are:

  • Eli Howey, recipient of the Don Phillips Scholarship
  • Philippe Blanchard, recipient of the Nick Novak Fellowship
  • Kurt Pammer, recipient of the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship
  • Leslie Reid, recipient of the RCA/Open Studio Fellowship

The Don Phillips Scholarship is offered in memory of printmaker Don Phillips, who helped establish printmaking as a fine art practice in Canada, and is presented annually to a recent graduate who has just completed an undergraduate art program with a printmaking major at an accredited Canadian institution and who will not be returning to full-time studies. Eli Howey is a comic artist and printmaker currently based in Toronto, using primarily analogue printmaking techniques to independently publish comics, artist books, small run editions of artist made objects, clothing and ephemera. Their work uses the tension between gestural, intuitive image making and obsessive attention to detail, to build realistic environments that focus on capturing the anomalies inherent to each print process. Over the duration of the Don Phillips Residency, Eli will be working towards building a body of work documenting the fluctuations between the intended purpose of an object and how it can be appropriated or repurposed for utility, as a parallel to understanding the transgression of bodies, groups and structures.

The Nick Novak Fellowship is offered in memory of one of Open Studio’s most influential master printmakers and is awarded annually to an artist currently involved with the Studio as an Artist Member. Philippe Blanchard’s practice questions the human perception of colour, time and movement. Inviting a playful questioning of our relationship to the visual world and asking us to reconsider its apparent familiarity, it also reframes media such as animation and printmaking and their mode of address. Combining screenprinting, sculpture and computer-controlled lighting, he creates installations where the meeting of coloured light and ink generate the illusion of motion, a form of expanded animation. Happening somewhere at the intersection of light, matter and mind, his work aims to rekindle a sense of amazement and curiosity at the phenomenological world and the perception of time through the use of visual magic. Recent and upcoming projects include New Troglodytes (Arprim, Montreal, QC; Chromatic Festival, Paris), Structured Light (Idea Exchange, Cambridge, ON; Galerie Glendon, York University; Wayhome Festival, Oro-Medonte, ON); and New Troglodytes 2 (National Museum of Print, Mexico City; CEARG, Guanajuato Mexico; BUAP, Puebla Mexico). Blanchard will use the Nick Novak Fellowship to create a new body of work that will deepen his exploration of the intersections of printmaking and animation. Working with screenprinting, installation and stop-motion animation, he will spend his year at Open Studio expanding his visual vocabulary by experimenting with new techniques, approaches and materials.

The Don Phillips Scholarship and Nick Novak Fellowship residencies each entitle the recipient to rent-free access to studio facilities for a period of one year; materials assistance; professional development opportunities; and tuition-free access to Open Studio workshops. In addition, each artist will mount an exhibition of the work created during their time at Open Studio and present an artist talk. Each recipient will commence their residency periods in September 2015, with an exhibition of the outcomes of their time at Open Studio scheduled for autumn 2016.

Through the support of an anonymous donor, the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship provides an annual fellowship to support a mid-career or established Open Studio Artist Member through the provision of six consecutive months of studio time to create and complete a specific project. Kurt Pammer is from Toronto. He studied graphic design at Humber College (1985) and worked in the field until 1994. Kurt started printmaking at Open Studio in 1999, taking classes in lithography. His graphic arts background quickly led to screenprinting, and eventually intaglio. Pammer has exhibited at Open Studio four times since 2008, most recently in the group exhibition On Your Marks… (2015). He regularly participates in Open Studio’s Artist Proof Sale, 100 Prints and Editions events. Kurt was shortlisted for the Open Studio National Printmaking Awards in 2013 and 2014, receiving first place and honourable mention, respectively. His work has been included in the John B. Aird Gallery annual Print Show many times, winning their third and second-place awards. He was included in the IPCNY’s New Prints/New Narratives: Summer 2013 (NYC); the print chosen for that exhibition was subsequently published in Printmaking Today magazine (Winter 2013). Alongside 43 other artists, Kurt took part in the Boundless and Borderless portfolio exchange between Sydney Printmakers (Australia) and Open Studio, which was exhibited in Ontario, Australia, Scotland and toured in Taiwan. He also participated in The Sketchbook Project Print Exchange (Brooklyn, NY, 2014). During his time as Hexagon Fellow, Kurt will work primarily in etching, expanding his knowledge of that print medium. He will be printing on a larger scale using Open Studio’s American French Tool press for the first time.

The RCA/Open Studio Fellowship is a collaboration between the Royal Canadian Academy of the Arts (RCA) and Open Studio. Open to all active RCA members regardless of their proficiency in print, this fellowship provides the opportunity for the recipient to create an edition of fine art prints facilitated by a skilled Open Studio printer. Leslie Reid was born in Ottawa. After graduating from Queen’s University she continued her studies in painting and printmaking in England. On her return to Canada, she taught Visual Arts at the University of Ottawa, where she is now Professor Emeritus. Early exhibitions include Some Canadian Women Artists, the National Gallery of Canada, and the Paris Biennale. She has had solo exhibitions in Canada, England, France and the USA. Recent exhibitions include the retrospective A Darkening Vision at the Carleton University Art Gallery, curated by Diana Nemiroff, and Builders: Canadian Biennial 2012 at the National Gallery of Canada. Reid has received numerous grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council, and awards from the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, where she has been a member since 1978. She has had residencies in France (Paris, Arles), California and Newfoundland, and recently travelled across the Canadian North and High Arctic with the Canadian Forces Artists Program. Her work is in the collection of the NGC and in public and corporate collections across Canada. The set of photo-etchings proposed for the RCA/Open Studio Fellowship will add significantly to the current project Mapping a Cold War, a series of multimedia works based on aerial photography taken across Northern Canada while with the Canadian Forces, and on related historical photographs from the National Air Photo Library. The print project will involve diptychs and overlays that relate the contemporary images to the archival photos, exploring both environmental and geopolitical change.

The next deadline for submissions for all scholarships/fellowships is May 1, 2016.

Open Studio gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $157 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country; the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario; the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council; and the Ontario Trillium Foundation, an agency of the Government of Ontario. Open Studio also acknowledges the generous support of its members and numerous foundations, corporations and individuals. Open Studio would also like to thank our anonymous donor for the kind support of the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship.

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