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Jury announced for 16th annual RBC Canadian Painting Competition

Emerging painters will be adjudicated by esteemed jury

TORONTO, April 15, 2014 -  One talented emerging painter will soon know the feeling of having their work hang with some of Canada’s most notable artists, including Emily Carr, Alex Colville and Lawren S. Harris, as part of the prize for the RBC Canadian Painting Competition. Nine respected members of the Canadian visual arts community have been selected by RBC and the Canadian Art Foundation to judge one of the largest competitions for emerging artists in the country

“We are so grateful to have such an experienced panel of jurors each year for the competition. Not only do they lend their expertise to the adjudication process, but they help to inspire and mentor the next generation of great Canadian painters,” said Robin Anthony, curator, RBC.

Finalists from the competition have gone on to have solo exhibitions, sell out collections and even become jurors themselves, which is a testament to the talent uncovered through the competition. RBC understands that artists in Canada need the exposure and opportunities to gain momentum in their career, which is why RBC is committed to nurturing Canadian artists as they embark on their professional journey.

More than 500 works are submitted each year to this national competition, which was established in 1999 by RBC with the support of the Canadian Art Foundation. The winner receives a purchase prize of $25,000 while two honourable mentions each receive $15,000. Past winners include successful painters such as Vancouver artist Rebecca Brewer in 2011, Toronto’s Vanessa Maltese in 2012 and, most recently, Colleen Heslin in 2013, also of Vancouver.

The 2014 jury is comprised of experienced gallery directors, artists and curators from across the country, who give many hours of their time to judge submissions over the course of the competition.

This year’s panel includes:


  • Naomi Potter, Director and Curator, Esker Foundation, Calgary
  • Melanie O'Brian, Director, SFU Galleries, Burnaby
  • Catriona Jeffries, Owner and Director, Catriona Jeffries Gallery, Vancouver


  • Melissa Bennett, Curator of Contemporary Art, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton
  • Robert Houle, Senior Artist, Toronto
  • Will Kucey, Owner and Director, LE Gallery, Toronto


  • Anthony Burnham, Artist, Montreal
  • Mark Lanctôt, Curator, Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, Montréal
  • Deborah Carver, Owner and Director, Studio 21 Fine Art Gallery, Halifax

The competition is part of the RBC Emerging Artist Project. Through mentorship, programming, exposure, awards and prizes, RBC’s goal is to showcase fresh talent, and allow artists to gain national recognition; bridging the gap from the academic to the professional world.

Submissions for the RBC Canadian Painting Competition are being accepted until Tuesday, May 6, 2014. The 15 finalists will be announced on June 14, 2014 and the winners on October 1, 2014 at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal. For more information, visit:

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Media Contact:

Alicia DeBoer, Brand & Corporate Citizenship Communications, RBC,