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Previous Winners of the RBC Award for Glass (2008-2017)

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2017: Montserrat Duran Muntadas

Entrañas 4, 2016. Montserrat Duran Muntadas, winner of the 2017 Award for Glass. Photo: René Rioux

The winner of the 2017 Award for Glass is Montserrat Duran Muntadas from Montreal, Quebec. In 2010, she graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Universitat de Barcelona and in 2007, from the Escuela del Vidrio of the Real Fabrica de Cristales de la Granja, Centro Nacional del Vidrio of Segovia, Spain. Over the years, she has participated in more than 30 national and international group exhibitions including: the SOFA Chicago 2016, the European Glass Context 2016 in Denmark and the European Glass Festival 2015 in Poland. Also, she was a finalist and laureate of several awards such as: the FUSION: The Ontario Clay and Glass Association and the Bourse ForCGal as well as receiving grants from the Conseil des Arts et Lettres du Quebec and the Canada Council for the Arts. In 2015, she had her first collaborative exhibition with Jean-Simon Trottier at the Galerie Espace VERRE in Montreal. Currently, her works which combines glass with other materials – such as paper, fabric or diverse organic materials – often take the form of wearable art, sculptures and art installations. Moreover, Montserrat has several solo exhibitions planned until 2020.

The Award for Glass was juried by Warren Carther, Carole Freve and Julia Feyrer.


2016: Aaron Oussoren

Aaron Oussoren has won the 2016 RBC Award for Glass. The winner of the 2016 RBC Award for Glass is Aaron Oussoren from Vancouver, BC. Oussoren graduated from Sheridan’s Craft + Design program: Glass (2008), was an artist in residence in the glass studio at Harbourfront Centre (2008-2012) and has recently completed a Master of Design degree at Emily Carr University. He has worked with glass in a variety of ways, from public artwork to tableware, and currently has a research practice that integrates 3D printing and a variety of digital manufacturing methods with traditional glass working. In 2013 he won the second prize for the RBC Award for Glass. Currently, he is teaching in the Design and Visual Arts departments at Emily Carr. He is excited to be part of the forward momentum of the glass community in Vancouver.

Oussoren plans to travel to Japan to study with glass master Peter Ivy.  This mentorship will provide him with an opportunity to experience Peter’s unique studio practice and techniques, explore local aesthetics of the area and research customized equipment. Oussoren plans to apply these new skills and techniques from this trip to new work and share his knowledge with the glass community.

The RBC Award for Glass was juried by Diane Charbonneau, Lisa Pai and Rachael Wong.


2015: Laila Le Francois

The winner of the 2015 RBC Award for Glass is Ito Laïla Le François from Rimouski, QC. Ito holds diplomas in sculpture and glass art. Her works are unfolding chimeras with strong primitive touches as she examines the beauty and ugliness of living beings. Femininity, violence and body obsession govern her art – instinctively, metaphors emerge. In her creations the human and animal anatomy are omnipresent with looming death and the coexistence of life. By choosing media for their symbolism and strength she sculpts a range of materials, those which occupy an important place in her creative process, to enable the blending of several complex ideas together in one work of art.

Despite her somewhat aggressive approach, sensuality dominates, seeming to originate from the unconscious in which her memories, written and spoken words are expressed and brought to light.

The RBC Award for Glass was juried by Alex Anagnostou, David James and Koen Vanderstukken.


2014: Cheryl Wilson Smith

The winner of the 2014 RBC Award for Glass is Cheryl Wilson Smith of Red Lake, Ontario. Cheryl Wilson Smith’s delicate and complex kiln-cast works are inspired by the boreal forest and the rocky shores of Red Lake where she lives. Created by translating drawings into countless individual layers of glass frit, her sculptures push the limits of glass while interpreting the northern Ontario light, landscape and wilderness. Wilson Smith has been invited participate in “First Light” an artist-in-residence inside the Arctic Circle of Norway, timed to coincide with the first day during which the sun reappears over the horizon line. The residency will also include visits of natural and artistic interest.

Working with renowned American glass artists Steve Klein and Richard Parrish and Norwegian artist Daniela Salathe she will experiment with the addition of colour, representing a significant technical challenge.

Karina Guévin and Cédric Ginart of Ange-Gardien, Quebec received the second prize.

The RBC Award for Glass was juried by Sandra Ainsley, John Paul Robinson and Valérie Paquin.


2013: Brad Turner

Mr. Turner received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Alberta College of Art and Design and, most recently, his MFA from the School of Art and Design at Alfred University (Alfred, NY). Turner’s work has been exhibited extensively in the Toronto area as well as at the Museum of Vancouver, SOFA New York, SOFA Chicago, Glassmuseet Ebeltoft (Denmark) and the Cheongju International Craft Biennial (South Korea). This award will enable Turner to travel throughout Germany, Denmark and Norway to visit museums and glass blowing production studios before producing new work while in residence at Glazenhuis in Lommel, Belgium.

Aaron Oussoren of Toronto, Ontario received the second prize.

The RBC Award for Glass was juried by Susan Edgerley, Elena Lee and Tina Poplawski.


2012: Benjamin Kikkert

The winner of the 2012 RBC Award for Glass is Benjamin Kikkert of Toronto, Ontario. Dominique Beaupré St-Pierre of Montreal, Quebec received second prize. The winners were announced at an Awards Ceremony held in Waterloo on October 10, during which guests were treated to an entertaining talk by celebrated artist Jack Sures.


2011: Sally McCubbin

The winner of the 2011 RBC Award for Glass is Toronto glass artist and designer Sally McCubbin. Ms. McCubbin graduated from the Crafts and Design Glass Program at Sheridan College in 2005. In addition to an active exhibition career, last year she produced two public art commissions for the TTC in Toronto. She is also the Managing Editor for Contemporary Canadian Glass Online Magazine and is an instructor at Sheridan College. The prize money will allow her to travel to Frauenau, Germany to do an artist-in-residence at the Eisch Glass Factory.
Mr. Benjamin Kikkert of Toronto received the Second Prize.


2010: Rachael Wong

The Clay & Glass Gallery is pleased to announce the winners of the 2010 Winifred Shantz Award for Ceramics and the RBC Award for Glass. These awards mark a significant moment in an artist’s career by supporting the recipients in their research and career aspirations. The awards also recognize the remarkable practices and achievements in contemporary ceramic and glass art in Canada.

Brendan Tang Shantz Award Winner 2010
Rachael Wong RBC Glass Award Winner 2010


2009: Cali Balles

Cali Balles work is very intimate in scale but reaches great depth in its discourse on environmental issues. Simple and elegant, yet powerful in the way they focus the attention of the viewer, her work shows her interest in the way patterns of the city interact with current and historical elements of the landscape. The project will examine relationships between nature and the urban environment.

“I have become curious about how the patterns of city structures have developed over time to create the urban environment. This was partly driven by my learning of the buried neighborhoods and hidden rivers that exists beneath Toronto’s streets; one such river runs beneath my home.” Cali Balles


2008: Julie Reimer

The RBC Award for Glass presents $5,000 to Julia Reimer to travel to Japan and research the influence of Japanese design and culture on modern western craft. In particular she will examine the influence of the Mingei Movement on vessel design and the role of nature as inspiration for Japanese craft design. She will be conducting her research at the Japan Traditional Craft Center and The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, as well as working directly wit mentor, glass artist Masahiro Sasaki.

The RBC Award for Glass was juried by Lou Lynn, a British Columbia sculptor working in glass and metal, Bruno Andrus, a Montreal-based glassblower artist, and John Kepkiewzc, glass artist from Thorn Glass Studio, St. Jacobs, Ontario.

Winners were announced at an Award Gala on September 25, 2008. A highlight of the Award Gala was a talk by the notable international Glass/Ceramic artist Peter Layton.

Julia Reimer: Julia Reimer studied glass blowing at the Alberta College of Art + Design, and enhanced her knowledge of design and traditional European glass making techniques through travels to Scotland, Spain, France and Hungary. Her original design and meticulous craftsmanship have been recognized through several awards, including the Canada Council for the Arts. In 2002 she was chosen as an Artist in Residence at the Corning Museum of Glass in New York state. Her work is carried in several Canadian and U. S. galleries and has been exhibited in Europe. Reimer’s designs are inspired by the landscape that surrounded her childhood home in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in southern Alberta. “That’s where I acquired an appreciation for the crisp prairie light, and the undulating hills and grasslands carved by wind and water that influence my artistic vision”, she says, adding, “My love of the stark montane landscape has led