In case you haven't heard the exciting news, our very own Jason Holley has made the semi-finals in Toronto as part of the RBC Emerging Artist competition for the most popular ceramic artist in Canada!
Presented by the Gardiner Museum, the 2nd Annual RBC Emerging Artist People’s Choice Award recognizes the artist whose work receives the most votes from the participating public with a $10,000 cash prize. This year’s nominees are Jason Holley (Newfoundland), Sarah Lawless (British Columbia), Janet MacPherson (Ontario), Julie Moon (Ontario), and Brendan Tang (British Columbia). See the artists’ work on view at the Gardiner and cast your vote from September 4 – 30 at the exhibition or online at gardinermuseum.com.
By the way, it's only one vote per person.
NOTE: Voting will close September 30th although the artists' work will remain on view until October 7.
Jason faces some stiff competition from his fellow ceramic artists. Sarah Lawless makes lovely organic forms and like Jason she also evokes place - in her case the beautiful B.C. coast- in her video. Janet MacPherson, Julie Moon and Brendan Tang take a very different approach in their videos. It more of what I call the "talking head" style and by that I mean it is where they just look at the camera and without any distracting visuals tell you about their piece in the competition. All the works are currently on view at the Gardiner Museum, which is across the street from the Royal Ontario Museum in case you are in TO, or the big onion as I affectionately call it. (NY being the big apple.) I was struck that Brendan Tang was the only competitor with the balls to actually ask the viewers to vote for him. Frankly, I was not surprised. I said to myself, "no wonder you've been covered in Canadian Art already." Frankly, Tang is lucky his work photographs so well. I know when I've seen it "in the flesh" I was disappointed by how clunky it looked. But that's just my not-so-humble opinion.
Check out Jason's video, on the Gardiner/RBC website and let me know which approach you prefer.
I was really intrigued by Jason's piece in the competition as it incorporates colour for what I believe is the first time. His piece is a typical coil composition but this time the broken coils that are spilling out of its core are blood red. My first reaction when I saw the image was, "this is darker than the new Batman movie". It represents a new level of vulnerability, of rawness from Jason Holley and I'd like to applaud his bravery.
Our lad wearing one of his very own signature chainmaille motif T-shirts.
I have put a "Vote Jason Holley" tag line on my e-mail messages today with a link to the Gardiner's competition website. I urge you to do the same. Come on people, let's kick some butt and help our home-boy win that $10,000 prize.