Posted by Open Studio

2018-19 Open Studio Residency Recipients

Open Studio Announces 2018-19 Residency Recipients

Open Studio, Canada’s leading printmaking centre, is pleased to announce the 2018-19 Open Studio residency recipients. These residencies 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 residency at Open Studio made for her as an artist, Sonya Filman (2014-15 Don Phillips Scholar) states: “The Don Phillips Scholarship is one of the many initiatives that place Open Studio among the ranks of world-class contemporary printmaking facilities; as an emerging artist, I cannot overstate how much the scholarship has helped me thrive, creatively and professionally, at this stage in my career.”

The 2018-19 recipients are:

  • Nix Burox, recipient of the Don Phillips Scholarship Residency
  • Agata Derda, recipient of the Nick Novak Fellowship Residency
  • Loree Ovens, recipient of the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship Residency
  • Mark Bath, recipient of the Jeannie Thib Mentorship Residency

Don Phillips Scholarship Residency: Nix Burox

The Don Phillips Scholarship Residency 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.

Nix Burox is a non-binary trans artist based in Montreal. Interested in process-oriented art, their work references archiving practices and takes the form of modular interactive art-objects such as sets of cards, artist books, and installations. Using autobiography as a tool to discuss issues of identity and mental health, Burox is interested in queer and small press initiatives, and was a founding member of the Concordia Queer Print Club. They have recently completed a BFA in Print Media at Concordia University and are the 2017 recipient of the Wendy Simon award. They have participated in a number of exhibitions and residencies, including a collaborative residency at Gravity Press Experimental Print Shop in Massachusetts and most recently a research/creation residency at the Concordia Fine Arts Reading Room.

Burox’s practice exposes the futile search for a coherent narrative through which to consolidate personal identity and experiences, using autobiography as a tool to understand the world. During their residency, they will work to expand and complexify their use of the archive as a framework for reinterpreting and recontextualizing the subjective. They are interested in discussing the topic of embodiment, particularly as related to their experience of anxiety, transness, and situating themselves in new spaces and environments. They will be working across print mediums, with an emphasis on woodcut and small scale works that build towards a larger collection, assemblage, or installation.


Nick Novak Fellowship Residency: Agata Derda

Nick Novak Fellowship Residency 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.

Agata Derda was born in Poland to a working class family. She began her art education at a local youth centre and later studied at the high school of Fine Arts in Wroclaw, Poland. In 2010 Derda completed a BFA with Honours in Printmaking at the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology, Ireland. Derda immigrated to Edmonton in 2011 where she completed an MFA at the University of Alberta in 2013. Derda has exhibited in Hamilton, Toronto, Edmonton and Vancouver as well as internationally in Slovakia, Poland, China, the United States, Ireland, France, and the UK. She recently won an award at the International Print Triennial in Krakow, Poland. She lives and works exclusively on her art practice in Toronto.

Derda’s art practice is centered on the creation of large prints, which combine both linocut and digital printmaking techniques. Her work often responds to and comments on contemporary social issues related to the injustices of cultural deprivation, such as the normalization of violence and sexual assault.

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. Each recipient will commence their residency periods in September 2018, with an exhibition of the outcomes of their time at Open Studio scheduled for January 2020.

Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship Residency: Loree Ovens

Through the support of an anonymous donor, the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship Residency 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.

Loree Ovens specializes in intaglio techniques: especially copper etching, aquatint, dry point and collagraph. Primarily working with Japanese Washi paper and often combining the use of surface design techniques for textiles, Ovens’ fascination with line, pattern, and architecture continues to inspire her work.

Ovens studied Fashion Technique and Design at PEI’s Holland College. She continued her studies and received an arts diploma from Sheridan College, SOCAD, majoring in fabrics. Subsequently, Loree had a two-year residency in the textile studio at the Harbourfront Craft Studio. In 2008, she earned a BFA in Printmaking from OCADU and began printing at Open Studio. She is represented by David Kaye Gallery. She has shown in national and international exhibitions in Canada, Japan, United States, Taiwan, Australia and Scotland. Her work is part of both private and public collections.

Ovens states:

I thrive on exploring new ways of working and pushing boundaries of what could be realized in my creative process. I have always been fascinated with science and the natural world. Using a digital camera microscope I plan to take photographs of plant, sand and water samples. Interpretations of my findings will be the starting point of the work that I would create at Open Studio, through etching, embossing and screen.

My inspiration for this project evolves around the work of Günter Haese, a German sculptor and printmaker linked to kinetic art. The intricacy of Haese’s kinetic sculptures in metal energizes me to look at printmaking beyond a two dimensional form.

Jeannie Thib Mentorship Residency: Mark Bath

Through the generous support of artist Jeannie Thib’s (1955-2013) family, friends and colleagues, the Jeannie Thib Mentorship Residency provides two months of studio time, 20 hours of mentoring and a materials budget, awarded annually to an artist in the early stages of their professional career, who has demonstrated an ongoing commitment to their practice.

Mark Bath is a visual artist from Newfoundland. At Memorial University, he studied Dramatic Literature and Creative Writing, and later pursued a Bachelor of Design in Illustration at OCADU. While at OCADU, Bath fell in love with the process of creating copper plate etchings and completed a series of intricately detailed self portraits as part of a student residency with Working Title Press at OCADU.

During the Jeannie Thib Mentorship Residency, Bath will create a series of etchings called Draped in Net. These prints will comprise a wordless storybook telling a fictionalized and tragic tale of Newfoundland resettlement. The story looks at trauma, migration and nostalgia through the lens of memory. Bath will work with mentor and printmaker Emma Nishimura for the planning, execution and presentation of Draped in Net.


The next deadline for submissions for these residencies is May 2019.

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 and the many donors to the Jeannie Thib Memorial Fund.


Categorised in: Artist Stories, Inside Open Studio, News