The 12 recipients of awards at the NEXT! Competition and guests were invited to a celebratory dinner November 2. I was again honoured by being asked to be one of the 3 artists who fielded a Q & A session. Michael Zarowsky, the winner of the Sedi-Mayer-Katz Award and Kathe Merilovich, recipient of the Cherry Carnon Award III were also on the panel. A few of the topics discussed included differing approaches to the canvas, what warrants the definition of 'abstract', and different and varied marketing strategies.
It was an exciting validation of many years of painting to receive the Gold Award plaque and $5,000. The Opening Gala October 23 was attended by the 44 artists whose work was selected from the 700 initial entrants. plus a guest. It was a great success with the 12 awards presented by the Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, Her Honour, the Hon. Elizabeth Dowdeswell. Speeches in appreciation of the Club, the artists and the importance of art to society generally were given by the chair, Zora Buchanan, The Arts and Letters Club President John Goddard and Her Honour, The Hon. Elizabeth Dowdeswell.
The symposium offered at RMG offered lots of information and areas to query in my own development as a painter. Jock MacDonald's search for expression of spirit and struggle to loosen his approach to his subject resonated with me. The show titled 'Evolving Form' included mature work as well as earlier Automatic watercolour drawings. The addition of thinning medium to oils allowed a new freedom in his paint application that related more to the earlier Automatic watercolours. Linda Jansma, Curator, RMG, visited Scotland and discovered 89 or these earlier watercolours. In addition to the later paintings, some of the watercolours are gems well worth the trip to Oshawa.