2017 RIA Salons 70 -75

RIA Salon 70: Ranajit Sinha
My journey and the contemporary Indian art scene
Tuesday, January 17 – 2017,



Ranajit Sinha: There is no place like home, 2016, oil and acrylic on canvas, 122 x 305cm

Indian-born artist Ranajit Sinha lived in different places in the world and is settled in Ottawa with his family for some years now.  He revisits his country of birth regularly, most recently last summer, and he shared some of his experiences with us in this Salon. He focused on the changing state of contemporary art in India, as well as on the importance of his travels for his own art practice.

Ranajit wrote: Thirty years ago, there was no market for experimental art in India. This has changed in a fundamental way. Nowadays, art collectors such as Charles Saatchi, Francois Pinault and Christopher Davidge own Indian artwork.

The reason for the boom in art market was the economic liberalization of India at the beginning of the 1990s and an economic upsurge. Unlike China, it was primarily Indians themselves who were buying Indian art, but from outside India. Although Christie’s opened a branch in Mumbai in 1995, it is still only moderately successful since the eye of the hype-storm was actually in New York where the majority of Indian business people lived and who were, arguably, buying Indian artwork out of a mixed sense of patriotism and love of art.

In my work I focus on the individual as a concrete node, an intersection of abstract global and local forces. This interest springs from my own experience as an immigrant. Born in India and living in Canada,  I have a relationship with two geographic regions, two physical spaces that are located on the opposite sides of the globe but overlap each other in the internal space of my body and even deeper, my mind. This duality has played an important role in every aspect of my personal and artistic life.

Ranajit Sinha was born and raised in New Delhi, India, and is currently based in Ottawa.

Ranajit  received his BFA degree from Delhi College of Art, New Delhi and MFA in Print Making from Visva Bharati University, Santiniketan in India. During this time he was awarded with various prestigious awards such as National Academy Award, All India Fine Arts & Crafts society (AIFACS), National Research Grant award etc.

Ranajit has received his second Masters degree in Painting from Central Washington University, with a teaching assistantship grant. He is a recipient of many awards, grants and had solo, group shows in Canada, USA and India.

Ranajit has worked in the advertising world with reputed companies such as Saatchi & Saatchi and Young & Rubicam for a period of time during his stay in United Arab Emirates.


RIA Salon 71: Penelope Kokkinos:
Recollection of a brief apprenticeship with Nancy Spero and Leon Golub
 Wednesday, March 29 – and April 4  2017, 7.30 PM


An artist’s job is to articulate what might otherwise be incoherent. -Nancy Spero

Penelope writes: Throughout the Fall of 1995, while enrolled in the fourth year of BFA apprenticeship program at the University of Ottawa, I had the opportunity to be absorbed into a working team of artists that supported the studio production and promotion of the artwork of Nancy Spero Leon Golub. At that time, Spero and Golub were in their mid to late 70s.

You can find Penelope’s text about her experience as an apprentice with Nancy Spero and Leon Golub HERE



RIA Salon 72, Karen Bailey Fogo Island, April 26 – 2017, At the E.B.A. (Enriched Bread Artists Studios)

The dot is a symbol found on the Fogo fishing stages used to guide fisherman safely over their bridges and to their stage doors at night.

Karen writes: In the autumn of 2016 I was invited to do an artist residency on Fogo Island, Newfoundland. Mine was not one of the famed Fogo Island Arts residencies, but rather a private sponsorship. The invitation came from a supporter of the arts who loves Fogo, admires my work and wanted me to experience this extraordinary island.

During my talk, I recouned the month my husband Iain and I spent living and painting on Fogo, the overwhelming topography of the island and finding my muse amongst the people of Joe Batt’s Arm.

From heraldic painter to war artist, Karen Bailey’s diverse career spans three decades. Her official portrait of the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean, 27th Governor General of Canada, was unveiled at Rideau Hall in 2012. Themes of service and community inform her work with past series featuring behind the scenes workers and the under-recognized: servers, church tea ladies, Canadian military medical personnel in Afghanistan and guide dogs for the blind. www.karenbailey.ca


RIA Salon 73: Tiffany April: Berlin
At RIA May 30 2017
A Day at the Circus.jpg

Tiffany April, A Day at the Circus, 2015. oil on canvas, 60″ x 72″

For our 73rd Salon we invited emerging artist Tiffany April to talk about her residency at Takt, Berlin.  She talked about her three-month stay, how she got there and how it inspired new paintings.

Tiffany April is an Ottawa-based artist, born in Montreal, QC. She recently completed her BFA of studio arts at Concordia University (2014). Following five months of travel including a three month art residency at Takt in Berlin, Germany, April returned to Ottawa where she currently works from The Rectory Art House in Lowertown. She hosts P(a)INT&DRAW life model sessions at Saint Brigid’s Centre for the Arts, and in her spare time volunteers at H’art of Ottawa. April was recently accepted to the MFA program at Ottawa U. Her full portfolio can be found on her site:  www.tiffanyapril.com


RIA Salon 74 Lori Victor:

MFA Vermont: Undoing Doing-Transitions in My Art Wednesday, September 6 – 2017RIA Salon 74, Lori Victor - Microsoft Word 25082017 110528 AM.bmp

When Lori Victor decided in 2015 to earn an MFA, her experience became an adventure that involved many trips to the Vermont College of Fine Arts, while lugging her work along.  Lori talked about the ins and outs of doing a “low-residency”  MFA in another city while maintaining a studio in Ottawa and working with local Artist Teachers.  She graduated earlier this year and share the story of her experience and how it affected her work, at this Salon.

Lori Victor is a full-time visual artist in Ottawa, Canada, and has exhibited since 2006. Her practice includes and often integrates installation, painting, photography and video. Lori’s work questions and reflects subjects such as cultural history, identity, and the environment/climate change.  She creates hand-constructed representational or abstracted shapes and forms, and uses accessible materials like found and manipulated objects. Her abstract paintings include both organically and mechanically painted imagery. Often her canvas is used as a material to manipulate through cutting and folding rather than just as a support. Much of her work evolves from system theory – the knowledge that we are all a part of a larger whole – both physically and metaphorically.  She earned a BFA in visual art from the University of Ottawa in 2011, and graduated with an MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2017.


RIA Salon 75Kathy Bergquist:Stegner House Residency, Saskatchewan

kathy Bergquist

Tree, 2017, by Ms Morvik’s grade 6/7 art class, facilitated by Ms Morvik and Kathy Bergquist.


Kathy wrote: My illustrated talk ranges from the general to the particular on the subject of the wonderful opportunities the Stegner House residency offers to artists of every sort. One issue I frequently address in my art practice is the dynamics of landscape, which is part of what drew me to southwest Saskatchewan and Stegner House. The experience of being immersed in this landscape became, and continues to be, a catalyst for multiple projects. Don’t imagine the Big Bang; imagine only the aftermath of seemingly endless energized expansion.

Kathy’s bio: I’m a late bloomer. My checkered career includes working on a wild horse and burro ranch in Nevada, muskox farming in Alaska, coordinating an oral history project in Qammani’tuaq, Nunavut, and since moving to Ottawa I have gained experience as a fairy camp coordinator, a green real estate agent, a welder, and now this . . . Sculpture has been my focus since 2011, and though it is a new language for me, this art form gives me the sense that I have found a vital way to understand and communicate with the world.