2021 PRIZE WINNERS
Susan V. Corrigan
“Within my work I use scrap fabric, which I cut, layer, and paint with gouache to create textural and narrative pieces. Embroidery and paper is added. The use of textiles appeals to the viewers sense of nostalgia; it connects them to something that is in all our histories – the handiwork, embroidery, quilts, and other objects our grandmothers and great grandmothers made that were, in essence, art.
“The work is narrative in nature and this, in combination with the traditional textile handicraft, references the haunting experience of sifting through our memories – poignant and evocative; difficult to ignore or forget.”
As a self-taught artist, Rachael looked to her childhood picture books and her grandmother's embroidery work for inspiration and to practice her skill. Rachael’s background in social work is reflected in the humanitarian elements of her work. Her pieces showcase her need for progressive discussions on oppression and emotional safety, especially for mothers. Rachael has received multiple awards and grants including being listed as one of the top 5 installations for DesignTO. She has received grants through the Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Arts Council. Rachael is the 2021 recipient of the Craft Ontario Helen Frances Gregor award for textile art and the 2021 Ontario Arts Council emerging artist grant.
Urban Country Chair
“I've been interested in furniture and design all my life. I started out as a cabinetmaker and furniture restorer but, over time, chairs became my passion. My newest design, Urban Country Chair, has evolved over my 40 years as a chair maker and furniture designer in Toronto and Collingwood.
“My first line of chairs was called English Country Chair, my own twist on the timeless designs of 19th-century chairmakers like Thomas Sheraton. After making hundreds of these chairs, my designer’s eye turned to the 20th century and the clean lines and smooth curves of the Mid-Century Modern school of design. The result is my newest line of chairs, Urban Country Chair. Handmade from oak and ash, these chairs are sturdy yet elegant.
“While my earlier chairs were more traditional, these chairs combine the new and the old: the time-honoured craftsmanship methods I have always used with a more contemporary look. The result is a hybrid of traditional bentwood techniques, which guarantee comfort and longevity, and a more open, inviting look. My quest has always been to combine beauty and comfort in a useful and appealing piece of seating. The texture and grains of a freshcut oak or maple log are enticing. Steaming and bending those logs into pleasing and practical shapes for my chairs is the essence of my craft.”
MONTCREST SCHOOL AWARD
“I am an illustrator and a textile artist based out of Toronto. Born and raised in Edmonton, I've been drawing and painting watercolour ever since I was little.
“With a deep love for flowing patterns, watercolour, and screen printing, I'm excited to share my passions with the world. My work combines a wide range of influences with elegance, bold colours, and my love for the intimate nature of animals. As for one of my favourite pieces – painting pandas is one of the cutest things I feel I've done and I really enjoyed portraying its carefree temperament.”
CAROLYN MCINTIRE SMYTH AWARD
TJ Indigo Clothing Co.
Carolyn McIntire Smythchestnutpark.com
TJ Indigo Clothing Co. is a contemporary indigo shibori one-of-a-kind clothing brand launched in Toronto in 2015 by Tamila Rostmoff.
A mix of modern comfort and beautiful quality in a distinctive 'living' blue color, our garments are cut, sewn, and dyed locally in Toronto from natural
and often organic fabrics. We offer clothing, bedding, and accessories. Rooted in Japanese culture, indigo shibori process dates back to the 1600s with
Samurai wearing indigo-dyed fabrics under their armor to help keep bacteria from wounds. The use of plant based indigo dye and traditional resist dyeing
techniques means that each piece is organically unique.
Tamila Rostmoff is the creative director of TJ Indigo Clothing Co. Born in a family of artists in St. Petersburg, Russia, she received her education from the Ontario College of Art and Design and has been working as a UX/UI designer of large enterprise software applications in both corporate and startup environments for over 10 years. She became concerned about toxins commonly found in baby products and specifically textiles while pregnant with her second child. This has led her into exploring botanical dyes and brainstorming designs of the more sustainable one size clothing for women. She launched TJ Indigo Clothing Co. in 2015 and hand dyes each garment in her treehouse studio. She works together with a fashion designer who brings over 30 years of experience in the industry and a lifelong love of fashion.