Not about ceramics today! But a great celebration, indeed.
I met Ufuk and his partner, Erica Mendritzki, about six or seven years ago right after they had graduated from Guelph. They were hired to teach as sessionals at the School of Art. Over the years it was my pleasure to watch them accumulate exhibitions and win awards all the while giving the portfolio workshops to high school students hoping to be accepted into the first year class at SOA.
This year Ufuk has had his work recognized by major awards both from the Manitoba Arts Council and the Canada Council.
From MAC, he received a $5000 A-Level Individual Art Grant, then $12 500 for the MAC’s Brooklyn Visual Arts Residency, and a $950 travel grant. He was also selected for their Major Arts Grant giving him an annual total of 35,000 in funding from our province.
The Canada Council awarded him an Explore and Create: Concept to Realization valued at 50,000$ over a period of two years.
The project that he is working on is intriguing. It is called Atilla’s Mirror Shop and is about his late uncle’s mirror shop in Izmir, Turkey. He will work on that project during his time at the International Studio & Curatorial Program in Brooklyn.
Here’s a link to the ISCP page: https://iscp-nyc.org/resident/ufuk-gueray if you are interested.
Winnipeg has some amazing individuals and it has been fabulous watching this young man find his artistic legs, so to speak. It was my pleasure to have been able to work with him and Erica during the time I was Associate Director. Now it is just nice to have them as good friends!
Well done, Ufuk! And well deserved.