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Vancouver's Tiziana La Melia wins 16th Annual RBC Canadian Painting Competition

Vancouver based artist Tiziana La Melia is the national winner of the 2014 RBC Canadian Painting Competition.

Vancouver based artist Tiziana La Melia is the national winner of the 2014 RBC Canadian Painting Competition.

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MONTREAL, October 2, 2014 -  When promising emerging artists are asked what they need in the early stages of their career to reach their full potential, industry connections and financial support are the most common responses. That’s why today, RBC and the Canadian Art Foundation are delighted to announce that Tiziana La Melia of Vancouver, BC has been chosen as the national winner of the 16th Annual RBC Canadian Painting Competition for her work entitled Hanging on to the part. In honour of her win, she will receive a $25,000 purchase prize for her work. Along with offering invaluable recognition and exposure to a broad audience, winning the RBC Canadian Painting Competition can advance the career of the winner by providing mentorship, introductions and affording them the time and space to focus on their inspiration and work.

“I’m very grateful to RBC for the support that they give to artists, so we can develop our practices,” said Tiziana. “I’m excited to win this award - it will give me the time to concentrate on my work in-studio with fewer constraints, while allowing me to connect with my audience in a greater way.”

In addition, two honourable mentions were given to Ufuk Gueray of Winnipeg, Manitoba for his work Market and Nicolas Lachance of Montreal, Quebec for his work index no.3 The book of Empathy. Ufuk and Nicolas were each awarded a purchase prize of $15,000 for their work. All three works of art will be added to the RBC corporate art collection, which holds more than 4,000 pieces – including many by emerging artists – and spans more than a hundred years of Canadian art.

“RBC is extremely proud to champion the work of emerging Canadian visual artists and to encourage the next step in their careers through this Competition,” noted Robin Anthony, curator, RBC. “The jury was incredibly impressed by the calibre of work from the finalists this year, and we look forward to following their careers in the future with great anticipation.”

In reviewing La Melia’s work, the jury was moved by the fact that Hanging on to the part combined abstraction and figuration to portray both mythological female archetypes and personal narratives. After rigorous discussion they concluded that the Emily Carr University and University of Guelph MFA grad’s work comes from a tradition of painting yet offers a platform to consider theatre, poetry and popular culture as well, giving her painting a unique edge over the other 14 finalists.

“With a mandate to create greater visibility and appreciation for Canada’s extraordinary artistic talent – both at home and abroad – the Canadian Art Foundation is thrilled to partner with RBC on this initiative,” said Jill Birch, CEO of the Canadian Art Foundation and publisher of Canadian Art magazine. “This year’s winners will no doubt continue to do us proud in the years ahead.”

Since 1999, the RBC Canadian Painting Competition has provided over 200 artists with an opportunity to exhibit their work on a national scale, at a critical time when they often need recognition and financial support. In addition to the purchase prize awarded the winners, all finalists also receive invaluable exposure to and insight from jurors, mentors and industry insiders. Past winners of the Competition, such as Dil Hildebrand, Chris Millar, Kristine Moran and Melanie Authier have gone on to considerable international acclaim and continue to represent us as some of Canada’s most successful artists.

The RBC Canadian Painting Competition is open to Canadian citi¬zens and permanent residents of Canada who are in the early stag¬es of their career. More than 600 artists submitted works for this year’s competition, from which 15 finalists were chosen from across the country. The RBC Canadian Painting Competition was judged by some of the most respected artists, gallery directors and curators in Canada. For visuals and descriptions of the winning works, visit

All 15 finalists’ paintings will be exhibited at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art from September 9 to October 8, 2014, at Art Toronto from October 24 to 27, and will be featured at and

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About the Canadian Art Foundation Canadian Art Foundation is the ultimate portal for the exposure of visual arts in Canada. All our efforts are dedicated to providing a destination for artists and art enthusiasts to connect and be inspired by art, in turn creating greater local, national and global visibility for the extraordinary artistic talent in Canada. Our diverse platforms and outreach include the publishing of Canadian Art magazine, Canadian Art in tablet form and, as well as the presentation of innovative events and educational programs. For more information about the Canadian Art Foundation, visit

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For more information, please contact:

Shauna Cook, RBC Brand Communications, 416-974-6286
Erin O’Brien, Veritas Communications, 416 646-1841
Simon Falardeau, Veritas Montréal, 514 755-5831