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Ottawa Arts Council Announces 2021 Arts Awards Recipients

Nominations were evaluated by a jury composed of arts leaders in the community representing different artistic disciplines.

Ottawa Arts Council Announces 2021 Arts Awards Recipients

The Ottawa Arts Council announced the final recipients of the annual Arts Awards today in a streaming video presentation celebrating the exceptional artists in the community. This year's laureates included music industry executive Colin Mills, multidisciplinary artist Claudia Salguero, and folk musician Amanda Lowe Warnakulasuriya.

Each year, the Ottawa Arts Council places a call out to the greater arts community to secure nominations for the six awards distributed annually: the Victor Tolgesy Award, which recognizes the accomplishments of residents who have contributed substantially to enriching cultural life in our city; the Peter Honeywell Mid-Career Artist Award, recognizing and encouraging the achievements of Ottawa artists of all disciplines who have evolved beyond the emerging stage in their career to become recognized professional working artists contributing to the community; the Emerging Artist Award, which, starting this year, recognizes the achievements of artists of all disciplines from Ottawa's IBPoC (Indigenous, Black, and Persons of Colour) community who are in the early stages of their career in the arts and are working towards becoming recognized professional artists; and the Project X Photography Award designed to recognize the merits of a publicly presented photographic project by an Ottawa-based artist.

Project-based awards include the Corel Endowment for the Arts Award, a future-oriented award that encourages evolution, innovation, creativity, and excellence of artists working on new initiatives in all art disciplines in Ottawa; and the Young Artist Award which is a mentorship-driven award established to support young Ottawa artists 14 - 17 years old.

The 2021 Arts Awards Recipients:

Victor Tolgesy Award: Colin Mills, music industry executive

Peter Honeywell Mid-Career Artist Award: Claudia Salguero, multidisciplinary artist

Finalist: Lucas Haneman, musician

Finalist: Guillermo Trejo, printmaker artist

Emerging Artist Award: Amanda Lowe Warnakulasuriya, musician

Finalist: Kathryn Patricia Cobbler, musician

Finalist: Namitha Rathinappillai, spoken word poet

Project X, Photography Award: Joyce Crago, photographer

Honourable Mention: Elizabeth Raymer Griffin, photographer

Honourable Mention: Katherine Takpannie, photographer

Corel Endowment for the Arts Award: Christine Mockett, fibre sculptor

Young Artist Award: Dana Van Loon, visual artist

Since 1988 the Ottawa Arts Council has awarded more than $364,000 to exceptional artists and to those who have shown outstanding commitment to the arts in the Ottawa community. This year, along with the generous support of award sponsors and partners Kelly Santini LLP, GGFL Chartered Professional Accountants, Mann Lawyers, the Ottawa Chapter of the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers, the School of Photographic Arts: Ottawa (SPAO), the Ottawa Art Gallery, the City of Ottawa, Artists and Artisans Study Group, and le Centre de production DAÏMÔN, the Council has seen the Awards program grow and adapt to the growing needs of artists in our community.

"At a time when our sector is at its most vulnerable, we are proud to shine a spotlight on this group of worthy creators," says Nicole Milne, Executive Director of the Council. "With the support of our sponsors and partners, the awards acknowledge their investment in our community, honour their resilience and celebrate the indelible mark they have made on the cultural fabric of our city."

Nominations were evaluated by a jury composed of arts leaders in the community representing different artistic disciplines. In light of the global health crisis, the Arts Awards presentation event was held online and announcements of the finalists and laureates were unveiled during a streaming event on April 22, 2021.

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