OAF News

2014 Recipient of the Laura Ciruls Painting Award Announced

Toronto, February 10, 2014 – Kitchener artist Melissa Doherty is the 2014 recipient of the Laura Ciruls Painting Award.The $4,500 award is given annually to recognize an Ontario based mid-career painter.


nestle no.6, oil on board, 20cm x 20cm, 2008


Black Maple no. 3, oil on canvas, 62”x66”, 2013


Melissa Doherty attended the University of Waterloo, graduating with an Honours Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art, Studio specialization) and was awarded the Arts in Academics Alumni Recognition Award.  She is included in the Magenta Foundation’s publication Carte Blanche Volume 2: Painting, a survey of contemporary Canadian painters, and was short-listed for the RBC Canadian Painting Competition. 

Melissa Doherty’s work has been included in exhibitions at Harbourfront Centre, MacDonald Stewart Art Centre, Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, and Christinerose Gallery, New York. Solo exhibitions include the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Sherbrooke, Quebec, the Doris McCarthy Art Gallery, University of Toronto, Wilfrid Laurier University and most recently the Art Gallery of Peterborough. Her work is represented in many public and private collections, including Sir Elton John, the University of Toronto, and Royal Bank of Canada.

The jury members commended Melissa on her dedication to her practice and her development of an impressive body of work.  They noted “Melissa’s use of aerial point-of-view, the non-literal reference to technology, and soft focus gives her work a unique take on landscapes.”

The Laura Ciruls Painting Awardwas established by Laura Ciruls, a professional graphic and web designer, as well as a traditional acrylic and watercolour painter. Through a bequest, Laura set up the Laura Ciruls Painting Award, to recognize artists like herself, who were contributing to the development of painting in Ontario.

The Laura Ciruls Painting Fund is administered by the Ontario Arts Foundation. The Ontario Arts Council manages the selection process for the award.

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For more information, please contact:
Alan Walker, Executive Director, Ontario Arts FoundationCouncil

416-969-7413 | awalker@arts.on.ca


The Ontario Arts Foundation (OAF) works with arts patrons to build long-term support for the arts in Ontario.

The Ontario Arts Council (OAC) is the province of Ontario’s main funding body for professional arts activity. Since 1963, the OAC has played a vital role in promoting and assisting the development of the arts and artists for the enjoyment and benefit of Ontarians. In 2012-2013, the Ontario Arts Council funded 1,793 individual artists and 1,076 organizations in 232 communities across Ontario for a total of $52.1 million.

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