Ina Gilbert is a Canadian artist whose abstract paintings and digital art have been exhibited since 1960. The Award was created in honour of Ina’s contribution to visual arts in Canada. The juried award is open for nominations annually to Canadian artists with demonstrated excellence in the multimedia visual arts. This year's nominees were shortlisted to 5 finalists and the winner, Thomas Brasch, was announced on June 25th. Honourable mentions went to Loree Ovens, John Ford, Elma Eidse Neufeld and Susan Farquhar.
Thank you to Roberta Innes for the nomination. Thomas’ colourful mandala images bring light and hope to dark events; tragedies such as the Danforth and Danzig Street shootings, the Toronto and London (Ont.) vehicle attacks, the Montreal Massacre of 1989, and the Pulse Nightclub Shooting of 2016. The story behind each image and the colours are inspirational, casting aside the gloom and darkness, replacing that with light, hope and healing for a better world. In my opinion, this work, its methodology, craftsmanship, and timely commentary on society is much deserving of the Ina Gilbert Award 2022.