Wrapping up another successful year, the annual Department of Art Open House held on Monday, April 10, presented the hard work of advanced and senior art studio students. The exhibition ended with a reception and awards ceremony honouring a number of dedicated students and offering a heartfelt tribute to retiring Art Education faculty member Janice Rahn.
The Student Art Awards recognize excellence and commitment to Art Studio and Art History/Museum Studies and include a brand new award, the inaugural Faculty of Fine Arts Medalta Residency Award which was presented to Grace Wirzba. The award allows Wirzba to attend a month-long ceramics residency at Medalta in Medicine Hat in May 2017. She also received the Art History/Museum Studies Gallery Award for her dedication to the 50th Anniversary exhibition Looking Forward Looking Back which is currently on display in the uLethbridge Art Gallery.
Awards are supported financially by staff and faculty, and community supporters including the Southern Alberta Art Gallery (SAAG), University of Lethbridge Student Union, the David Lanier Memorial Fund and The Studio art store. The SAAG Award was presented to Ildikó Barraclough. Fred Johnstone received the Student’s Union Award. Angeline Simon won the David Lanier Memorial Award. Amy Parks received the Excellence in Art History/Museum Studies Award. The Excellence in Digital Art Award went to Elitsa Ivanova, and the Excellence in Print Making Award went to Tye Dandridge-Evancio. Two recipients took home the Excellence in Art Studio Award: Michelle Sylvestre and Marjie Crop Eared Wolf. Martina Visser and Danin Lawrence both received the Studio Art Supplies Painting Prize. Finally, a major accomplishment, Jennifer Bowen took home two awards: Excellence in Native American Art (NAA) Studio, and Excellence in NAA Art History/Museum Studies.
The 2017 Roloff Beny Award recipients were also announced, going to Dylan Dobbie, Jackie Addison and Megan Venables. The Roloff Beny Awards provide travel funding to aspiring photographers to allow them to pursue the photography project of their wildest dreams. The awards began in 2006, providing over $105,000 in bursaries to eligible photography students. A 50th Anniversary exhibition this fall will highlight the work of past Roloff Beny award recipients.
Finally, the 2017 student art purchase was announced. Each year the Department of Art purchases a student artwork to place prominently within the University. This year the department will be purchasing a piece by Kylie Fineday.