In celebration of their twentieth anniversary in 2017, the Gabriola Arts Council (GAC) created the Gabriola Artists Support Program (GASP)—a fund to support local artists in pursuit of creative, educational, or community-based projects. The fund was seeded by contributions from the President’s Legacy Fund (created from donations in honour of Kathy Ramsey’s contribution to the arts on Gabriola) and a donation from artist Tammy Hudgeon. The GAC Board of Directors agreed to allocate a portion of membership fees to the GASP, a decision which will ensure an ongoing source of revenue for the fund.
The GASP program is divided into three areas: 1. Individual Artists—Professional Development; 2. Individual Artists—Project; and 3. Emerging Artists—Scholarships & Learning Opportunities. The GASP program enables GAC to fulfill to key elements of the organization’s mandate:
- To promote community awareness of and participation in the arts.
- To support learning at all levels and provide opportunities for artists and arts organizations to receive mentorship.
In July, a committee met to review 19 worthy applications spread across the three areas, and in September GAC awarded the first GASP grants to a diverse group of recipients. Seven artists were selected to receive grants, and in September five of those artists received their money. The final two artists deferred their funding to the Spring. If they are not able to use the funds on the project for which they applied, the funds will be returned to the pot and dispersed in future rounds.
The recipients of the 2018 GASP Grants are:
Emerging Artist category:
Raena Tzotzos (14 years old) received $300 to be used for tuition and related costs for continued studies in ballet and other dance.
Moira Wishinski (11 years old) received $300 to be used for tuition and related costs for continued studies in ballet.
Heather Cameron received $500 to support her attendance at an international fabric arts conference in Amsterdam, where she presented on her work.
Jason Brown received $500 to support his recording and production of an album of original music.
Trevor Gear received $400 to support the creation of hat blocks used to hand-make manipulation hats used for clowning.
The submission details for the 2019 GASP! Grants will be announced in the Spring. For more details, click here.