BMO 1st Art!

BMO 1st Art! Invitational Student Art Competition

2017 Application Forms

Competition Rules and Guidelines PDF file
Submission Form PDF file

BMO 1st Art! celebrates the creativity of art school students from over 100 post-secondary institutions across Canada. Every year BMO Financial Group invites the deans and instructors of undergraduate-level certificate, diploma, or degree programmes in studio art to select from their graduating classes three students whose ability and imagination place them 1st among their peers.

Each promising student is asked to submit digital images of a recent work to BMO Financial Group’s Art Collection Unit by May 15, 2017. Our distinguished selection committee will review the submissions in July and choose one winner from every province and territory to be 1st in their region. A national winner will also be chosen.

The regional winners will each be awarded $7,500 and the award for the national winner is $15,000. All winning entries for 2017 will be on display at the 1st Art! 2017 exhibition, held at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery during the fall of 2017 (date to be determined).

The BMO 1st Art! 2017 Selection Committee

Hugues Charbonneau, Director, Galerie Hugues Charbonneau
Naomi Potter, Director/Curator, Esker Foundation
Kim Simon, Curator, Gallery TPW
Pan Wendt, Curator, Confederation Centre Art Gallery
Dawn Cain, Curator, BMO Corporate Art Collection

2016 Winners

The winners for 2016 vividly demonstrate the excellence and promise of Canada's newest generation of artists (click on the image for a larger view).

National winner

Nathan Levasseur
University of Alberta

Everyone Changes
Digital drawing; digitally printed on metallic gloss paper, Edition 1 of 1
91.44 x 91.44 cm; 36 x 36 in

Alberta winner


Joel Matthew Warkentin
Alberta College of Art & Design

In, Out
Hickory, cherry, black walnut, wenge wood
160.2 x 160.2 x 5.08 cm; 63 x 63 x 2 in


British Columbia winner

British Columbia
Elizabeth Villalva Granda
University of British Columbia

La Tierra del Dólar
US bills
19 x 5.5 cm; 7.5 x 2 in

Manitoba winner

Zahra Baseri
University of Manitoba

3mm Plywood, India ink, laser print photos
Each 30.5 x 45.7 cm; 18 x 12 in

New Brunswick winner

New Brunswick
Jennifer McInnis-Wharton
New Brunswick College of Craft & Design

Slab built raku clay fired to cone 6, oxide wash, archival sepia ink
152.4 x 182.9 cm; 60 x 72 in


Newfoundland and Labrador
Lucas Morneau
Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland

Part I: The Seer, Part II: The Abyss
Fire-charred oak and computerized LED sequence
Diameter: 120 cm; 48.5 in

Nova Scotia
Jordan Blackburn
Nova Scotia College of Art & Design University

Toile #1 (roll)
Screen printed wallpaper
305 x 61 cm; 120 x 24 in


Nunavut winner


Alookie Alikatuktuk
Nunavut Arctic College

Qulliq for Life
Sterling silver, Baleen, found tundra rock
8.8 x 16.51 x 11.43 cm; 3.5 x 6.5 x 4.5 in


Rouzbeh Akhbari
Ontario College of Art & Design University

Institutional Stabilizer (Art Gallery of Ontario and
Bank of Nova Scotia)
C-prints, reclaimed shipping pallets (wood),
scissor jack, bubble levels
2 photographs each 91 x 122 cm; 36 x 48 in
Sculpture 1: 86.4 x 45.75 x 45.75 cm; 34 x 18 x 18 in
Sculpture 2: 96.5 x 66 cm; 38 x 26 in

Prince Edward Island

Dylan McQuaid
Holland College

Digital print, Edition 1 of 1
91.4 x 60.9 cm; 36 x 24 in


Alexandre Ménard
Université du Québec à Montréal

Détour à l’aveugle
Silkscreen paper, cardboard
203 x 203 x 203 cm; 80 x 80 x 80 in


Kristen Auger
First Nations University of Canada

Nîpihikan Pimâtisiwin: Flower Life
Stroud cloth, seed beads, satin, velveteen
51.4 x 30.4 cm; 20.25 x 12 in

Tyler Anderson
Yukon School of Visual Arts

Envy, Desire and The Unrequited

Acrylic on plywood
236 x 152.4 cm; 93 x 60 in

2015 Winners | 2014 Winners | 2013 Winners | 2012 Winners | 2011 Winners

2010 Winners | 2009 Winners | 2008 Winners | 2007 Winners | 2006 Winners

2005 Winners

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