April 2015

Alumni Benefits Alumni Events
2015 Alumni of Influence Awards Recipients
OCAD University is proud to announce the recipients of the 2015 Alumni of Influence Awards: Donna Cummings (AOCA, 1967); Allan J. Ryan (AOCA, 1967); Christine Germano (AOCA, 1994); Gracia Lam (BDes, 2009); and Doris McCarthy (AOCA, 1930). Nominated by their peers and selected by a jury of alumni, faculty and staff, the 2015 recipients are being celebrated for their outstanding professional and artistic achievements, as well as their community service. Please join us in Toronto on May 2 for the awards reception.  RSVP Now!

Alumni Day at GradEx 100 on May 2

Illustration by Gary Taxali

Room 187, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The Alumni Lounge will be open at 100 McCaul Street, where alumni will get the VIP treatment! Take a break from touring GradEx; drop in and relax; enjoy some complimentary food and drink; register for a tour of the Medal Winners' Exhibit; and meet some of our key affinity partners, like the Alumni Association, Artists’ Health Alliance, Continuing Studies, Street Capital, and TD Insurance.

Great Hall, 100 McCaul St., 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Join Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor, and Maggie Broda (AOCA, 1972), President, OCAD U Alumni Association in honouring the recipients of the 2015 Alumni of Influence Awards. Guests will enjoy complimentary hors d'oeuvres, refreshments, and live entertainment as we present the awards to the winners of the Distinguished Alumni, Distinguished Educator, Trailblazer, World Builder, and Legacy awards. 

RSVP Today!

Project 31 Auction Most Successful to Date!

Photo by Gary Beechey

Project 31, OCAD U's annual live charity auction to support student success, has raised $183,000, the largest amount in the event's six-year history. By the time Waddington's auctioneer Stephen Ranger announced the final winning bid on March 26, all 42 lots were sold. Twenty-four of the lots went at or above the catalogue estimate, with the most competitive bid - a whopping $11,000 - winning a piece by Anda Kubis. Read more

Alumni in Action: Sky Goodden (MFA, 2010)

 Photo provided by Sky Goodden

After graduating from OCAD U, Sky Goodden (MFA, Criticism and Curatorial Practice, 2010) became the Editorial Resident at Canadian Art, and later she was the founding editor of BLOUIN ARTINFO Canada. In 2014, she created MOMUS, an online art publication that promotes international art writing and journalism, and stresses a return to art criticism. Goodden regularly writes for Canadian Art, Modern Painters, Art + Auction and C Magazine. The Alumni Newsletter recently asked Sky a few questions about her journey since graduating from OCAD U.

AN: What led you to pursue a career in Criticism and Curatorial Practice?
SG: A deep attraction to art history and the ways in which it leaves itself open to new interpretation and application in the contemporary moment. And a very real frustration with the current climate for art criticism. I wanted to address the lack of evaluative writing, the lack of good prose and accountability.

AN: Looking back, what was most resonant or pertinent from your OCAD U experience?
SG: Either the moment when Andy Patton (instructor) said art writing at its best is equal to its object, or the realization that what I was learning wasn't really going to prepare me for the real thing.

AN: How do you mean?
SG: I mean that theory doesn't prepare one for a practice. But it conditions the mind. The degree builds confidence and analytic thinking. Then you have to apply those things, out there on your own.

AN: What advice would you give the class of 2015 as they approach starting a professional art or design practice?
SG: Be brave but not without humility. Listen more than you talk. Be alert and self-informed, and always curious. And most importantly, have a position.

AN: What has been the most exciting (and possibly intimidating) project you have taken on?
SG: Founding my own international art publication that stresses a return to art criticism, MOMUS.

AN: Any final comments on your career? What do you see on the horizon?
SG: I hope my ambition that sometimes verges on audacity continues to be met with enthusiasm, and that my critics don't outweigh my supporters. I hope that, in a vital way, I continue to be a part of the larger conversation. I hope not to lose my sense of urgency.

Share your journey since graduation with  Alumni Relations

Alumni Giving: Danica Loncar (AOCA, 1992)

Photo provided by Danica Loncar

Art as Community, Artist as Mentor

The Art Works Art School Scholarships are a humble way of allowing me to say "Thank You" to OCAD University for being seminal to my achievements and for keeping us all connected in a meaningful way. - Danica Loncar

Danica Loncar (AOCA, Drawing & Painting, 1992) graduated from OCAD U with Honours. She was also a recipient of the Lieutenant Governor's medal. During her time as a student she benefited from a learning environment so rich that it has stayed with her since graduating. She fondly remembers the instruction of Lorne Towes and Pheobe Gilman in her figurative drawing and painting classes and the excited, creative flurry that was her life as a student. Her positive experiences followed her as she embarked on her journey as a practicing artist and teacher instructing in both art and design at the college level. 

Practicing the message of mentorship has been a part of Loncar's life ever since. She is the director of Art Works Art School and Gallery in Toronto, founded in 1996, and the force behind the establishment of two OCAD U scholarships. Community building is one of the core principles of Loncar's mandate for Art Works Art School and Gallery and also the motivating factor in her commitment to OCAD U, of which she will always remain a part.

"I feel so privileged and lucky to do what I do. I feel that we, as OCAD U alumni, have an obligation and responsibility to give back and to communicate to students and fresh grads that there is so much opportunity that awaits them beyond the classroom."

Her eloquence and positive strength is something OCAD U can be proud of as we count her as among the ranks of our impressive graduates.

For more information on Art Works Art School & Gallery, please visit www.artworkartschool.com

If you want to learn more about supporting students contact Michelle Kim.

In Memoriam: Earl Wilson (AOCA, 1946)


Earl Wilson (1923-2014). Honorary Fellow (1988), teacher, friend and mentor to two generations of interior design students, passed away peacefully in his sleep December 16, 2014 with Bonnie-the-dog and other caregivers present.

We received some touching tributes to Mr. Wilson from his former interior design students, including this note from David Thomas (AOCA, 1967):  "I could tell you many stories about Earl regarding his passion for his profession, but the best story was my second class with him which cemented him as my interior design god. He pulled out some water colour renderings he had done for the Chateau Frontenac. One in particular has remained embedded in my memory. It was a view from the mezzanine looking down into the lobby. The crystal on the chandeliers were so transparent you could see though them. After he was done with showing us his rendering he walked up to the blackboard and said, 'I will teach you the complexities and trick to perspective this year'. He picks up a piece of chalk and begins to draw a spiral staircase in 12 point perspective FREEHAND!!! I was hooked. I never got that good but I did catch his enthusiasm for interior design. So much so that I am celebrating my 48th year in the business this June. I attribute my whole success and passion to the greatest teacher I ever had anywhere, anytime."

Cam Taylor (AOCA, 1958) also commented that "he was a very talented man who did a great deal for OCA. He made the school humming."

Send your memories of your time at OCAD U to Alumni Relations.

In Memoriam: Elliot Joel (AOCA, 1995)

Photo provided by Joel Family

Elliot Joel (1970-2014) was a digital artist specializing in computer game graphics. During his years in the Drawing and Painting program he developed many long-term friendships. He was generous, well travelled and enjoyed cycling, skateboarding and surfing. He also dedicated much of his time to working as a Youth Leader. Towards the end of his life he struggled silently with depression and ended his life in October 2014. The Elliot Joel Bursary was established by his family to assist individuals living with mental health issues, to pursue a degree at OCAD University. Read More

Call for Submissions: RBC Painting Competition

 Photo provided by RBC

Since 1999, the RBC Canadian Painting Competition, with the support of the Canadian Art Foundation, has been a unique initiative to help bridge the gap from emerging to established artists. More than just financial support, this program offers mentorship, exposure to audiences and more. Submissions are now open until May 6, 2015. Read More


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