The MacLaren Art Centre in Barrie is pleased to announce that the 2016 recipient of the John Hartman Award is Erika DeFreitas. DeFreitas is a Toronto-based multidisciplinary conceptual artist. In her practice, she explores the influence of language, loss and culture on the formation of identity with textile-based works and performative actions that are photographed, placing an emphasis on process, gesture and documentation. She is a graduate of the Masters of Visual Studies Program at the University of Toronto. Her work has been included in group shows in the United States in venues such as Project Row Houses in Houston, the Pollock Gallery at the Southern Methodist University in Dallas and the Houston Museum of African American Culture. Her upcoming exhibitions include those at the Art Gallery of Windsor, the Museums of Mississauga, Open Studio in Toronto and the Art Gallery of York University. DeFreitas is a recipient of the 2016 Finalist Artist Prize from the Toronto Friends of Visual Arts. Her work can be seen at www.erikadefreitas.com
The John Hartman Award is made possible with the generous support of MacLaren patron and regional artist John Hartman. This annual award of $4000 is granted to an emerging artist who is producing strong work and who could truly benefit by more time in the studio for research, experimentation and the development of new work. The artist is selected based on a recommendation from the MacLaren’s curatorial team and the award is administered by the MacLaren Art Centre. Past recipients include visual artists Richard Watts (2010); Duane Linklater (2011); Matt Bahen (2012); Julia Vandepolder (2013); Matt Macintosh (2014); and Tanya Cunnington (2015). As Executive Director Carolyn Bell Farrell comments, “The MacLaren is committed to fostering artistic talent. Through John Hartman’s generous support, an opportunity is provided annually for an emerging artist to explore and develop their creative potential with confidence, building a solid platform for future success.”
John Hartman was born in Midland, Ontario in 1950 and studied fine art at McMaster University in Hamilton. A leading Canadian artist, he has exhibited internationally and his works are found in numerous important public, corporate and private collections. His national touring exhibition Cities (presented at the MacLaren Art Centre in the fall of 2008) focused on aerial views of cities and harbours; shores, coastlines and bodies of water remain a major element in his practice. Hartman lives and works in Lafontaine, Ontario and is represented by Nicholas Metivier Gallery in Toronto.