RBC Artist Mentorship Award

The Mentorship Award is currently closed and will reopen in Spring 2019. 

The RBC Artist Mentorship Award addresses business and sustainability challenges that are faced by working artists while fostering the relationship between the business and arts communities. 

Annually there aresix mentorship award recipients who receive $1500 to support their mentorship process. They are matched with a mentor to support their developing entrepreneurial skills.

The Mentorship Award is available to past RBC Arts Access Fund recipients.

The application process is adjudicated by a jury of professional Toronto artists. Recipients are matched with mentors in the business sector, taking into account any preferences submitted by the mentee. The time commitment for all mentors and mentees are 2 hours a month for one year, or as designed by mentor/mentee.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Recipient of RBC Arts Access Fund 

To apply, complete the form at the bottom of the page. Questions? Contact ines(at)torontoarts(dot)org or call 416-392-6802 x 221.

The 2018 Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship Award recipients are: 

Mirna Chacin is a Venezuelan-born Canadian visual artist who is passionate about working with people and telling their stories through images. Shortly before immigrating to Canada in 2011, she was awarded The University of Zulia's Gold Medal for her contribution to strengthening cultural identity and enriching Venezuelan Art history. Mirna is the recipient of RBC Arts Access Fund, Ontario Arts Council, and Toronto Arts Council's Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship grant. Additionally, in 2017 she was awarded the Community Impact Award from the MNLCT for her outstanding contributions in telling the stories of newcomer inclusion through photography.

David Chinyama is a visual artist originally from Harare, Zimbabwe, and is currently living in Toronto. David graduated with honors in Painting from the National Gallery of Zimbabwe School of Art and Design. He also holds a diploma of Fine Arts from the Harare Polytechnic College. David was a full-time visual artist for over fifteen years in Zimbabwe before migrating to Canada, and is determined to continue the same career in Toronto. David’s professional accomplishments include being offered an artist residency by the National Gallery of Zimbabwe in 2003; this culminated in his first solo exhibition and museum presentation 'Visual Poetry’ at the same institution. Additionally, David has maintained a full- time artistic practice, boasting over 10 solo exhibitions and several group shows in his home country of Zimbabwe, as well as abroad in numerous countries. David has been recognized for two Zimbabwe National Merit Awards in Painting in both 2004 and 2013. His work has been reviewed by numerous art journals and media houses both in Zimbabwe and abroad, and is in the permanent collections of several national institutions and private organizations.

Elsa Hashemi  is a photographer from Iran. She states, “as a photographer,  I see things the way they might have never been seen before. I see people as they have never been themselves.” Elsa has exhibited 8 shows internationally, including her latest work "I, in Wonderland" at Art Square Gallery Hub in Toronto (July 2017).

Alice II Shin is a Korean filmmaker who received her formal film training at Nihon University in Japan. Since then, she has worked in Japan, Korea, USA, and Canada as a director, producer, and editor. Her independent work has screened at the Cine Rail International Film Festival (France) and Jeonju International Film Festival (Korea), and has been showcased on major networks, including Fuji TV. Alice currently lives in Canada and is making independent films. Her most recent project 'Haru’s New Year' follows a young immigrant women living in Toronto. The project is supported by the Reel Asian International Film Festival, Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Aitak Soharitalab is an award-winning visual artist, art instructor, researcher, and art producer. She is the founder of Airsa Art & Thought Association, supporting new Canadian artists and art workers through training, events, and community art initiatives in Toronto. She holds a Master of Design and Production from the University of Art of Tehran. Since immigrating to Canada in October 2013, she continued to research and teaching while maintaining her artistic production in ceramic and sculpture studio. To date, she has received a total of 6 art grants and awards in Canada, and has curated two exhibitions in Toronto.

Fan Zhang is an award winning visual artist who has received numerous awards from national and international juried art shows, including in 2016 from the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour of the A.J.Casson Medal Award. He is an elected member of the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour (CSPWC) and the Ontario Society of Artists (OSA). Fan now focuses on cityscape depicting old buildings with rich history and culture in the city. He tries to arouse people’s attention and a desire to protect Toronto’s disappearing historic heritage sites.


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