Meet our wonderful judges for this year's awards!
Best of Exhibition Award
Most Innovative Work Award
Olga Korper, Owner and Operator of Olga Korper Gallery
Olga Korper has been director of the gallery for more than 40 years, having dedicated her life and career to the service of conceptual contemporary art. She has worked tirelessly with serious collectors in both private and corporate spheres, placing artwork in homes, museums, banks, and businesses around the world. Olga served 8 years on the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board, 3 years on the board for the Contact Photography Festival, and in 2013 she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Art Dealer’s Association of Canada. Olga has consistently been a source of wisdom and guidance for artists, fellow dealers, and aspiring collectors, granting an audience to anyone who seeks advice in her Queendom – the kitchen of 17 Morrow Avenue. Since 1989 the gallery has doubled as Olga’s home, where she can be spotted with a cappuccino and her royal hound, Kiwi.
Founding Chairman's Award
Tiana Koffler Boyman, Chair of the Koffler Centre for the Arts
Tiana Koffler Boyman is Co-Chair of the Koffler Centre of the Arts, a prominent Toronto based Jewish contemporary cultural organization. The Koffler presents a cross-disciplinary arts program that promotes inter-cultural dialogue through a diverse range of programs in literature, theatre, visual arts and public engagement. Tiana has served the Koffler Centre in many capacities since 2001 including as a member of the Governance, Nominations, Fundraising, and Strategic Planning Committees as well as the Koffler Gallery Advisory Board.
Ms Koffler Boyman is involved in the philanthropic community for over 30 years providing her focus on health, science, and arts related organizations. She has sat on numerous boards of charitable organizations including the Canadian Friends of the Weizman Institute of Science in Israel, the Board of Sterling Hall School (creating with her husband, Marc Boyman, the Boyman Student Art Gallery), and the Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre at the Mount Sinai Hospital. Through her continued association with the Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre, Ms Koffler Boyman remains as an advisor and currently is Co-Chair of the Breast Cancer Philanthropic Advisory Board as well as the Donor Relations and Stewardship Committee at Mt Sinai Hospital.
Tiana Koffler Boyman is the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.
Founding Chairman's Award
Flavio Belli, Curator
Flavio Belli possesses a wide range of experience in the Canadian arts community. He is an art consultant, curator and artist. He is currently Chair of the Board of Directors for the Al Green Sculpture Studio and School and a member of the Board of Directors of the Italian community’s Columbus Centre.
He was Co-Curator of The Al Green Gallery in 2013 and 2014. He served as a member of the sculpture selection committee for the McMurtry Gardens of Justice (2007-2014) while also a Board member of the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition (2004-2014). By appointment of the Governor in Council, he served two three-year terms as a member of the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board in Ottawa (2005-2012). Flavio was Director and Curator of the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery in Columbus Centre (1990-2005). During that time, he was also an on-camera arts commentator for Toronto Living, for Rogers Television (1999-2004).
A visual artist in his own right, Flavio’s artworks have been shown in solo and group exhibitions since 1974 and his works form part of public and private collections.
Mayor's Purchase Award
Neil Brochu, Supervisor Collections and Outreach, City of Toronto
Neil Brochu is the curator of the City of Toronto Art Collection, a collection which contains nearly 2600 art works displayed in public buildings across the city. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Art from the University of Guelph and a Master of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto. A keen student of local history, material culture and fine art, Neil has worked with the City's art and artifact collections since 2004. Since that time he has steered numerous curatorial projects focusing on period interiors at the City's historic sites and exhibits at The Market Gallery, St. Lawrence Market.
Best Emerging Artist Award
Nathan Heuvingh, Director of Propeller Gallery
Nathan Heuvingh is the current Director of Propeller Gallery as well as an independent curator, writer, and musician based in Toronto, Ontario. He is a graduate of OCAD’s Masters in Contemporary Art, Design and New Media Art Histories and received a Bachelor of Arts in Studies in Arts and Culture with a concentration in Curatorial Practices from Brock University. Heuvingh has experience in curating, exhibition development and arts administration through his work with a number of cultural institutions including OCAD University, Craft Ontario, Nuit Blanche, Rodman Hall Art Centre and Brock University Radio. He has a background in contemporary art, sound art, music and radio broadcasting and has written for various publications including Senses and Society and Earshot!.
Best of Student Award
Honourable Mention Student Award (x2)
Joshua Heuman, Curator of Education and Public Programs at The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery
Joshua Heuman has been an art museum educator and curator since 2000. Before joining the staff at The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery as Curator of Education and Public Programs, he held positions at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Salt Lake Art Center (now Utah Museum of Contemporary Art); Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art at Utah State University; and, Joslyn Art Museum. He has organized education and public programs; organized exhibitions; juried exhibitions and competitions; published essays, interviews, and reviews; presented conference papers; and, lectured at museums and universities. Born and raised in Toronto, Josh attended York University where he completed a BA in Visual Art (Art History) and an MA in Art History, focused on "content" in American post-World War II abstract painting.
Best of Ceramics Award
Honourable Mention - Ceramics (x2)
Aaron Milrad, Counsel, Dentons Canada LLP
Aaron M. Milrad is counsel to Dentons Canada LLP, a global law firm, headquartered in Toronto. At Dentons he provides specialized legal and business advice to clients nationally and internationally who are involved in the arts, media and copyright industries. Mr. Milrad has written and lectured widely on copyright law, art law, publishing and media law.
He was Chair of the Board of the Museum Trustee Association of North America until 2010, a continuing member of the Board of Trustees of The International Foundation for Art Research in New York, the International Board of the Tel Aviv Museum, a member of the Canadian Friends of the Israel Museum, former Chair and Vice Chair of the Board of The George R. Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art and its American Foundation and a founding director of the Tate Canadian Foundation, former trustee of the Art Gallery of Ontario, Chair of the Acquisition Committee and was a member of the Photography Committee of the Art Gallery of Ontario (“AGO”) former chair of the Koffler Centre for the Arts in Toronto, former VP of the Board of the McMurtry Gardens of Justice Inc. in Toronto and a board member of AXA Art Americas Insurance Corporation for the past many years.
Best of Painting Award and Honourable Mention Painting
Best of Paper Award
Best of 2D Works Award
Lee Petrie, Coordinator, Exhibitions and Residency Program at Living Arts Centre
Lee Petrie is the Coordinator, Exhibitions and Residency Program at the Living Arts Centre. She curates exhibitions for the Centre’s Gallery and public spaces, and oversees more than 20 artists who work in the Centre’s professionally equipped studios. Prior to joining the Centre in the summer of 2016, Lee was Curator at Toronto Pearson International Airport for 10 years, where she curated exhibitions on contemporary art and craft, and brought dynamic programming to the airport through live music and hands-on art activities. Lee previously worked in public programs at the Varley Art Gallery and the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. She is currently Chair of the Board of Directors at Open Studio and is a member of the Toronto Public Art Commission. Lee holds Master of Arts degrees in Art History and Museum Studies.
Best of 3D Works Award
Honourable Mention 3D Works
Best of Craft & Design Award
Best of Jewellery
Denis Longchamps, Artistic Director and Chief Curator at Art Gallery of Burlington
Denis Longchamps has received his PhD in art history in 2009 from Concordia University where he was the administrator of the Jarislowsky Institute for Studies in Canadian Art from 2006 to 2011. Longchamps also taught art and craft history at Concordia University, York University and at Dawson College. He has contributed essays, articles and reviews to magazines and journals such as Espace-Sculpture, Ceramics Monthly, and Ceramics Art and Perception. Recent curatorial projects include Lyndal Osborne’s Of Water and Tides (2014), and the touring Naked Craft (2015-2017). He was the publisher and managing editor of Cahiers métiers d’art : Craft Journal (2006-2016).
Best of Photography and Digital Media
Honourable Mention Photography and Digital Media
Cheryl Powers, Photographer, and SNAP Silent Auction Chair at AIDS Committee of Toronto
Cheryl Powers is a fine art photographer with interest in the subtle and stark beauty of the natural world. Her work was originally produced with film and is now mainly digital format photography. Cheryl has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Toronto and has studied photography at George Brown College in Toronto. Her freelance work includes, book covers, author’s portraits, music events, and children’s books.
Cheryl has served the past 6 years as the Chair of the Silent Auction for SNAP, The Contemporary Photographic Fundraiser for the AIDS Committee of Toronto. She has been the judging team leader and organizer for the SNAP photographic competition since 2013.
Eyes of Society - Social Commentary Award
Judged by the Artists of Eyes of Society - The New Regionalism Project: David Ward, Anja Karisik, Gary Landon, Sophie Lavoie, Andrew Sookrah, April White and Jaalen Edneshaw, and Gwaai Edenshaw
The New Regionalism 'project' is dedicated to spreading an awareness of the correlation between free expression in the arts, and open, democratic society. Since the time of the Industrial Revolution, Regional art movements have emerged every few generations in response to social and economic injustice, environmental concerns and the failure of political systems to effectively address the most pressing issues of the day.
Historically, when artists have engaged with the world – bringing to bear new ideas and creative new approaches – a way forward has been imagined. By recalling the untold history of Regionalism in art, a new generation of artists aims to 'reboot' this long-lived and influential independent movement, in the belief that art – independent art, that is – will reveal new ways of seeing the world and, perhaps, an alternate path.