Staff & Board

Get to Know Us 

Staff & Work Exchange Assistants

Pat (Patrick) Macaulay
Executive Director

Patrick(Pat) Macaulay, originally from Vancouver, became the Executive Director of Open Studio in December 2017. Pat holds an MFA from the Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. He has experience working in large and small museums, galleries and art centres in Canada and the United States. As a curator and arts administrator, Pat has developed specialized knowledge of contemporary art, craft, design and architecture. He has worked on numerous exhibitions, large-scale public projects and festivals.

 

Pat previously worked as the Director of Visual Arts at Harbourfront Centre. During his 26-year tenure, he curated hundreds of exhibitions, designed and created new exhibition presentation spaces and revitalized the retail shop operations. He also developed new partnerships with local, national and international arts organizations and associations. He was chosen as a curator in Nuit Blanche 2013, encompassing ten large-scale installations along University Avenue.

 

Pat brings incredible energy to his role as Executive Director of Open Studio. He is a firm believer in the Toronto Arts community. He hopes to capitalize on the power of location while creating an international profile for Open Studio and its artist members.

Laura Bydlowska
Programming and Communications Manager

Laura Bydlowska was born in Warsaw, Poland, and currently resides in Toronto. She obtained a Master’s in Museum Studies from the University of Toronto and a BA Honours from the University of Guelph.

 

Laura is responsible for scheduling and overseeing Open Studio’s programs and events. She directs general communications, including promotional activities, and manages the institution’s online profiles (social media, website, E-commerce store). She also provides administrative direction as needed and assists with community relations, education services and development initiatives. She works closely with all staff in the day-to-day operations of Open Studio.

 

Her art practice revolves around etching and pyrography [wood burning], and focuses on abstract geological compositions. During her free time, Laura enjoys spinning records, video games, and spending time with her partner and cats.

Pudy Tong
Studio and Education Manager

Pudy Tong’s memories of his immigrant Canadian childhood are punctuated by the images of large stacks of Chinese newspapers landing on his family’s doorstep every two weeks, air-freighted in from Hong Kong to a small rural town in British Columbia.

 

His print-based art practice draws on elements from journalism as the subject through which our experience of contemporary, media-saturated society is refracted, reinterpreted and reimagined. He received his BFA from the University of British Columbia Okanagan and an MFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and exploring the city’s various enclaves of regional cuisine.

Rebecca Travis
Curator and Collections Manager

Rebecca Travis is a writer, editor, and curator, originally from the UK and based in Toronto since 2014. She was Managing Editor of London-based online contemporary art magazine this is tomorrow between 2014 and 2016. She has also contributed to Apollo Magazine, The White Review, Canadian Art, C Magazine, Momus, Prefix Photo, Aesthetica Magazine, and many more publications.

 

Rebecca has a degree in Fine Art from the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne and has worked in public and commercial galleries since 2010. Through her gallery work, writing and curatorial practices, Rebecca is passionate about generating conversations around contemporary art, focusing on the vibrancy of the Canadian art scene and bringing an international perspective.

Sally Ayre
Office Assistant

Sally Ayre is a lens-based artist working in print and historical photographic processes. Walking is one of her passions, an activity she enjoys, where her thoughts can flow at liberty in many directions and from where many of her art projects have been sparked and fostered. A graduate of OCAD (1990), Ayre has exhibited nationally and internationally. She is an educator specializing in Historical Photo Processes and has received several grants and awards, including the 2012/13 Open Studio’s Nick Novak Fellowship. You can find out more about her practice here.

Sunny Elsom
Office Assistant

Sunny Elsom is a printmaker and illustrator with a BFA in print media from Concordia University. Sunny’s work explores the frailty of the human condition, often focusing on themes of illness, loneliness and grief. Her work is expressed through the combination of the familiar world with the surreal, often utilizing depictions of narratives centred around bizarre characters in unusual natural environments.

Sophie Edelhart

Sophie Edelhart
Archive Assistant

Sophie Edelhart (they/she) is a scholar, printer, and bookbinder from San Francisco, California. They hold a B.A. in History from Barnard College and an M.A. in Yiddish from University of Toronto. They are currently pursuing a PhD in Yiddish with a collaborative specialization in Book History and Print Culture at University of Toronto. Their research focuses on material culture, memory studies, space studies, and community-engaged archiving, especially looking at memory maps from 20th century yizkor bikher. Their print and book work focuses on Jewish themes and Yiddish type and typography. Their first artist book, Chad Gadya was acquired by the Thomas Fisher Rare Books Library in 2023.

Sandi Ralph
Archive Assistant

Sandi Ralph merges photographic images and often overlays colour blocks on aluminum or paper. Ralph studied at the Ontario College of Art and Design, and graduated with Honors. She is the winner of numerous awards in painting and printmaking, and her work is held in corporate and private collections in Canada, the US and the UK.

Helen Tran

Helen Tran
Archive Assistant

Helen Tran is a multidisciplinary artist based in Mississauga. She earned a Diploma in Visual and Creative Arts from Sheridan College in Oakville, ON and a BFA in Printmaking & Publications from OCAD University. Tran’s body of work incorporates printmaking methodology with an array of mixed media. Ranging from analogue image-making, cyanotypes, lithography, and relief. She explores the notions of ephemerality within the elements of mourning, healing and ancestral rituals from her culture. Her current work is a series of linoleum carvings of botanicals inspired by nature, gardening, and childhood memories that embody personal narratives through her prints.

Board of Directors

Shabnam Afrand
Board Chair

Shabnam Afrand is a multi-disciplinary visual artist and educator, born and educated in Tehran, Iran.  She taught in the faculty of Fine Arts at Azad University from 2003 to 2010. Shabnam moved to Canada in 2013 and since then has been based in Toronto. Shabnam’s themes relate to power, the intersection of personal and collective memory, relocation, and fragility through various bodies of work. In 2017 and 2018, Shabnam was a recipient of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s RBC Arts Access Fund.  She recently received the Toronto Arts Foundation RBC Space Award and was the grant recipient of the Toronto Arts Council Newcomer Refugee Artist Mentorship Program.

Joe Borowiec
Director

Joe Borowiec is a retired civil servant with a bachelor’s degree in urban planning and an MBA. He has had a life-long interest in visual art and admires the technique of printmaking and the tactile product produced by the interplay of a medium and ink. Joe wants to contribute his experience in city planning, budgeting, board recruitment and corporate governance to the arts community in Toronto.

Andrea deBruijn
Director

Andrea deBruijn has been hooked on printmaking for over ten years. She earned her BFA with a concentration in print media from Concordia University and was selected for the 2014-2015 Studio Practicum in printmaking at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Andrea joined Open Studio in 2018 as an artist member and began serving on the Board of Directors in 2020. Her ongoing print projects combine woodcut, monotype, and installation processes to explore ideas of home and belonging. When she’s not at the studio, Andrea enjoys riding her bike or getting to know a new place on foot. She currently lives in Sackville, New Brunswick, where she works as the Printmaking Technician at Mount Allison University.

Alysa-Beth Engel
Director

Alysa-Beth Engel is a visual artist and writer. Her work explores Jewish identity, vulnerability and tikkun olam (healing the planet). Alysa is an Artist Member of Print London, and an Artist Board Member of Open Studio Contemporary Artist Centre, where she was previously the archivist and sales manager. Alysa was a contributing writer for D.A., published by the Porcupine’s Quill. She worked at Sotheby’s (London, UK), trekked solo in Nepal, and summited Mount Kilimanjaro. Alysa’s art is in corporate, public, and private collections nationally and abroad.

Emma Fried

Emma Fried
Director

Emma Fried is the Show Manager for Artist Project and Art Toronto, acting as a key member of its curatorial committee. She collaborates with artists, gallerists and art world professionals alike, while working with members of the public, to bring memorable exhibitions to life. Emma has also built and curated several notable commercial collections including those for Toronto’s Bisha and Park Hyatt Hotels, and The William Vale, in Brooklyn. Her contemporary art expertise is rooted in a deep understanding of historical art practices, informed by a Masters degree in Art History, with years spent working and volunteering in museum and gallery settings.

Defne Inceoglu

Defne Inceoglu
Director

Defne Inceoglu is a Toronto-based researcher, fundraiser & arts & culture professional. They have a variety of interdisciplinary experience across the arts and disability/healthcare sector. Inceoglu is currently the Development & Partnerships Officer at Surrey Place, overseeing the organization’s diversified fundraising priorities, which includes grant and proposal development and writing. Previously, they have worked in and for various cultural institutions in Toronto, including the Textile Museum of Canada, the Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto, Myseum of Toronto, and the Royal Ontario Museum. They have a Master’s degree from the University of Toronto in Museum Studies, during which they were the recipient of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council – Canadian Graduate Scholarship. Inceoglu has worked as a freelance graphic designer for over ten years, and carries out a small but consistent practice as a textiles artist.

Kathleen Lew
Director

Kathleen Lew is an arts professional and Associate Curator, Public Programs & Learning at Myseum of Toronto. She has worked at Myseum for over three years, shaping dynamic programming that explores the city’s past, present, and future. Kathleen holds a Master’s of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto. She has volunteered at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto’s Feminist Art Collective, and the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. She is looking forward to bringing her programming experience and love for the arts to the Open Studio Board during this exciting new chapter.

Emma Juliette Sherland
Director

Emma Juliette is an emerging bi-racial artist based in Mississauga, Ontario. Her work is focused on processing her own negative experiences with violence and mental health issues through art-making, specifically on photographic and printmaking processes. She graduated in 2020 from Art and Art History, a joint program between the University of Toronto Mississauga and Sheridan College. Since then, she has founded The Take Action Gallery, an online gallery for current students of the Art and Art History program and has established a presence with the community.

Sana Waheed
Director, Treasurer

Sana Waheed is a financial industry professional who holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Economics from York University and an MBA from Rotman School of Management. She has extensive experience in audit, compliance and risk management; however, she has always been passionate about visual arts. She enjoys creating art through various medias but is especially drawn to cross-hatching and printmaking due to their conventionally monochromatic results and attempts to create traditionally busy artifacts from her native Pakistan in a minimalist fashion. She also daydreams about starting her own textile printing business, again, with an emphasis on minimalism. Sana will contribute to Open Studio’s success through leveraging her experience in audit, corporate governance and financial management.

Careers & Volunteerism

Opportunities

To find out about volunteer opportunities, please email us. Additionally, when positions or opportunities becomes available, we will post them here on our website.