BMO Announces Winners For BMO 1st Art! Awards

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BMO Announces Winners For BMO 1st Art! Awards

by aanationtalk on July 26, 2013930 Views

Emerging student artists from each province and territory recognized in the 11th annual BMO 1st Art! Invitational Student Art Competition

– National winner receives $10,000 prize, 12 regional winners receive $5,000

TORONTO, ONTARIO – July 26, 2013 BMO Financial Group today announced the national winner and 12 regional winners of the BMO 1st Art! Invitational Student Art Competition. As Canada’s only national graduating artist competition, BMO 1st Art! honours visual arts excellence in post-secondary institutions from coast to coast. This year’s winners were selected from 250 entries, the highest number submitted to date for the competition.

The national winner receives $10,000 and the regional winners each receive $5,000. As the ultimate accolade, the national winner’s artwork becomes part of the BMO Corporate Art Collection, which includes works by historical and contemporary Canadian masters such as Kenojuak Ashevak, Emily Carr, Paterson Ewen, Marc-Aurèle Fortin, Lawren Harris, Wanda Koop, Micah Lexier, Kent Monkman, Ian Wallace and many others.

“The talent of this year’s winners is exceptional,” said Gilles Ouellette, President and Chief Executive Officer, Private Client Group, BMO Financial Group. “We were extremely impressed by the submissions and the variety and scope of the work.”

The diverse works produced by the 2013 winners cover a range of themes in a variety of media. They include:

  • A mixed media installation in the form of a large paper cloud, suspended and magically lit from within houses a miniature universe of drawers, shelves, and documents, vividly conveying the function and messy assemblage of memory
  • A wall sculpture incorporating a steel pipe that spills forth thick sheets of old house paint relates a powerful message inspired by environmental concerns and the pipeline debates
  • A haunting mask consisting solely of cigarette butts comments on identity and the excessive use of harmful substances
  • A structure crafted from white and red cedar, birch ply and self-milled poplar wood integrates traditional building techniques with a design borrowed from nature and a sound recording in a “nest” that we can enter and experience
  • A series of found antique handkerchiefs embroidered with lines of red thread to represent bloodlines or veins and symbolize the pursuit of family history
  • A 14k yellow gold, sterling silver, walrus ivory and leather cord pendant combining the four tools of the artist’s ancestors, which were historically used for beauty and survival

Deans and instructors of undergraduate certificate, diploma, and degree arts programs were invited to select three graduating students who stood out from among their peers because of their skill and imagination. A panel of esteemed judges chose the overall national winner and one winner from each eligible province and territory.

2013 Winners

BMO 1st Art! 2013 National Winner: Erika Dueck, University of Manitoba

BMO 1st Art! 2013 Regional Winners:

Alberta Tiffany Wollman, Alberta College of Art & Design
British Columbia Sam Knopp, Emily Carr University of Art & Design
Manitoba Hillary Smith, University of Manitoba
New Brunswick Carson Isenor, Mount Allison University
Newfoundland & Labrador Whitney French, Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Nova Scotia Alexis Bulman, Nova Scotia College of Art & Design
Nunavut Silas Qulaut, Nunavut Arctic College
Ontario Eshan Rafi, York University
Prince Edward Island Valerie LeClair, Holland College
Quebec Laura Rokas-Bérubé, Concordia University
Saskatchewan Charles Brendan Schick, University of Regina
Yukon Territory Derian Blake, Yukon School of Visual Arts

“This year’s BMO 1st Art! winners once again have presented us with extraordinary and compelling artwork from all across Canada,” said Dawn Cain, Curator, BMO Financial Group, Corporate Art Collection. “We are delighted to showcase the ambitious and inspiring work of these young artists and hope this experience will serve as a vital catalyst for their artistic careers.”

The winning pieces can be viewed on BMO Financial Group’s website here.

Representing the best of Canada’s newest generation of artists, all of the BMO 1st Art! winners’ works will be on display at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA), 952 Queen Street West in Toronto, from October 2 to 27, 2013.

About BMO Financial Group

For more than 195 years, BMO Financial Group has believed in community reinvestment and corporate and social responsibility in the communities it serves. In 2012, BMO contributed more than $87.6 million in donations, sponsorships and events in Canada and the United States to groups, organizations and programs that help build and sustain resilient, vital and healthy communities.

Media Contacts:
Beja Rodeck, Toronto
(416) 867-3996
[email protected]

Valerie Doucet, Montreal
(514) 877-8224
[email protected]

Laurie Grant, Vancouver
(604) 665-7596
[email protected]

To arrange to speak with any of the winners, please contact:
Naoko Kumagai
(647) 784-7865
[email protected]


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