The YVR Art Foundation (YVRAF) has announced the nine BC First Nations artists who will each be awarded $5,000 for their creative excellence and commitment to further develop their art practice. The winners will be recognized at the annual YVRAF Awards Reception held at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) on May 29, 2015. The reception will also include the unveiling of the 2014 scholarship recipients’ art works which will be exhibited at YVR for one year.
“Sharing the rich cultural stories from BC First Nations is dependent on today's young artists," said Susan Jackson, executive director, YVR Art Foundation. “The 2015 YVR Art Foundation Award recipients represent some of the best emerging First Nations artists in British Columbia. We are proud to help these young visionaries realize their creative potential and contribute to the success of a new generation of artists."
YVRAF Scholarships are awarded annually to emerging artists of BC First Nations ancestry in the Youth (under age 27) and Mid-Career (age 27 and up) categories. The Foundation awards Youth Artist scholarships to those who wish to develop their artistic potential and Mid-Career Artist scholarships to those who wish to further their careers or extend their work into a new scale or area.
The winners of the 2015 YVR Art Foundation Youth Artist scholarships are:
- Jay Bellis, age 23, Haida, residing in Masset
- Shoshannah Greene, age 22, Haida, residing in Queen Charlotte
- Harrison Hemeon, age 17, Squamish, residing in Abbotsford
- Kelsey Jules, age 20, Shuswap, residing in Kamloops
- Danika Naccarella, age 17, Gwa’sala-nakwaxda’xw/Nuxalk, residing in Terrace
- Edwin Neel, age 24, Kwakwaka’wakw, residing in Vancouver
- Cole Speck, age 23, Kwakwaka’wakw, residing in Alert Bay
The 2015 Mid-Career Artist Scholarship recipients are:
- Dean Heron, Kaska/Tlingit, residing in Terrace
- Danielle Morsette, Sto:lo/Suquamish, residing in North Vancouver
The recipients are selected by a jury of three senior First Nations artists. Each recipient will receive a $5,000 scholarship to attend a formal art institution or study with a mentor over the course of one year. The Youth Scholarship recipients will also be taken on a guided tour to visit Vancouver museums, galleries and art studios for a day. The YVR Art Foundation has awarded nearly $350,000 to over 70 artists since 2005.