Announcing | RBC Artist Mentorship Award Recipients

6 artists get personalized professional development from the business sector in Toronto.

Neighbourhood Arts Network, in partnership with WorkInCulture is pleased to announce the recipients of the inaugural RBC Artist Mentorship Award.

The RBC Artist Mentorship Award celebrates artists who demonstrate artistic excellence and are making a contribution to Toronto’s cultural life. The award bridges the need for artists to develop sustainable entrepreneurial skills and supports the challenges facing professional artists.

Six artists will receive $1500 support for a professional development opportunity, and receive mentorship from community experts in their relative fields.


Photo courtesy of Neda Mirbagheri


The recipients of the 2017 RBC Artist Mentorship Award are:

Mao Correa is a conceptual visual artist - painting, assemblage and graphic design-, who lives in Toronto, Canada. He was born in Santa Martha and raised in Bogotá, Colombia, where he obtained his Graphic Design degree and carried out university studies in painting, drawing, anthropology and plastic arts. Since completing his undergraduate degree, he has maintained an independent practice for 25 years as a plastic artist expressing through creating eclectic and visceral artwork his fearless attitude against the lack of environmental awareness and frenzied consumerism. Mao Correa has shared his artwork in numerous individual and collective exhibitions in Colombia, Central America and most recently, in Canada. His art pieces are part of art collections in United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Canada, Venezuela, Brazil, Colombia and Peru.

Carlos Delgado is a Colombian artist based in Toronto. His works explore a multitude of expressions and ranges of human self-expression. Focusing on capturing the subtleties of emotions and experiences as expressed through the face and the body, his work becomes a reflection of each individual being and humans as a whole.

Carlos is an internationally recognized artist with works held in private collections in Canada, USA, Europe, Asia, Australia and South America. His work has been shown in solo and group shows in Canada and Colombia. Carlos is a recipient of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s RBC Arts Access Award (2015), a two-time finalist for Toronto Arts Foundation’s Newcomer Artist Award (2014 and 2015), winner of the Power Plant Gallery Artist Residency in Toronto (2016) and several live art public commissions such as Ontario Culture Days (2016) and Pan Am Games (2015). He is also a co-recipient of the Toronto Arts Council Community Arts Grant (2017) for his community art project “In Our Shoes.”

Paola Gomez is an artist facilitator, writer and human rights lawyer. She is also the co-founder and director of Sick Muse Art Projects. In 2008 Paola was awarded Toronto Community Foundation Vital People award for her contribution to the city of Toronto by her community led initiatives. She has also been awarded with the Amina Malko award by Canadian Centre of Victims of Torture CCVT for her work in supporting Refugee Women in Canada.

In addition, as a researcher and emerging curator Paola has contributed in many aspects to the access and visibility of other Latin American artists into the Toronto’s artistic scene; she has co-curated the Art of Non-Violence Collective Art Exhibit, For Love to Frida and other women and “Mientras Las Hojas Caen” among others.

Serene Husni Alahmad is a Palestinian-Jordanian filmmaker and multimedia journalist with years of experience creating short documentary films and videos. She completed her Masters of Fine Arts in Documentary Media from Ryerson University with distinction in 2013. Her directorial debut Zinco won the Audience Award for Best Documentary from the Franco-Arab Film Festival in 2013. Zinco is a visual study of the construction material used in building Palestinian refugee habitats. Set in the Talbieh Refugee Camp in Jordan, the film looks for visible manifestations of displacement.

Dana Prieto is a multidisciplinary artist, activist and educator born in Buenos Aires and based in Toronto. Her current work experiments with video, repurposed materials and light, creating immersive installations that propose collective participatory experiences. Through her practice she explores the female identity and her diverse cultural roots braided with experiences of migration, community remembrance and regeneration.

Paul Salter is a documentary filmmaker, born in Devon, England. In 2009, Paul completed his dissertation film - a story filmed at sea, capturing two characters lost on a fishing boat.  In 2011, Paul arrived in Toronto and since then has been volunteering at various festivals around the city: Reelworld, Manifesto, HotDocs and Ekran, the Polish film festival. He is currently working on an interactive web-documentary platform that presents the stories of Toronto newcomer artists.