Wednesday, February 23, 2022

The Talent Trust congratulates ECMA 2022 nominees

Congratulations to all ECMA 2022 nominees from the Talent Trust.

Past Talent Trust scholarship recipients who received nomination are:  

Adam Vincent Clarke: Classical Composer of the Year

Beth McKenna - Beyond Here: Jazz Recording of the Year 

Breagh Isabel - Girlfirends: Song of the Year & Fans’ Choice Video of the Year (Director: Tamara Black) 

Greg Melchin: Children's Entertainer of the Year  

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Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Excel Garay solo exhibition: Gaba o Buyag, I will always hide many things from you

Join Talent Trust scholarship recipient
Excel Garay for their solo exhibition, Gaba o Buyag, I will always hide many things from you, at the Anna Leonowens Gallery, February 15 - 19, 2022. 

Excel was the winner of the 2021 RBC BIPOC Emerging Artist Award.

About the exhibit: 

Through tones of ultramarine blue, Garay paints plastic ready-mades, found objects, and immersive installations alongside paintings to summon the invisible hauntings that support the Global North. In Gaba o Buyag, I will always hide many things from you, they wish to explore themes of melodrama, baroque excess, hauntology, fugitivity, time, and invisible labor through a transnational queer necropolitical lens. ‘Ultramarine’ originated from the Latin term ultramarinus, which means ‘from beyond the seas’. It references the heavily extracted mineral called Lapis Lazuli, which is known to decorate the body of the Virgin Mary during the Renaissance period.

About Excel Garay:

Excel Garay is a Filipina Canadian diasporic settler occupying Mi'kma’ki territory in K’jipuktuk, Eskikewa’kik (Halifax, Nova Scotia). They work as a curator, expanded-media painter, and cultural worker. Garay is interested in contradictions that lead subjects, like them, into complicity and complacency. These materially manifest through paintings, ready-made objects, immersive installations and more. Their interest lies in the prismatic unseen contradictions and incommensurable situations while focusing on themes of fugitivity, time, and labor. Hauntology and melodrama under a queer necropolitical lens foregrounds their practice.

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Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Luca Haase: World Juggling Federation win!


Last month, Talent Trust scholarship recipient, Luca Haase, attended the 16th annual World Juggling Federation convention in Las Vegas, Nevada, where he won in the juniors category!

"I met a whole bunch of great people, made several new friends and generally had the best time of my life. There were also many workshops, and I learned a lot from them. A big portion of the convention were the competitions. They were devised into four categories: beginners, juniors, intermediates and advanced. I competed in the juniors category and I won!

Anyway, I edited together a compilation of some stuff I recorded there. Thank you so much again for your generosity and kindness, and helping me to go on this trip!" (Luca Haase).

You can see Luca's incredible talent in an inspiring video he created from his time at the World Juggling Federation in Las Vegas! Link here.
You can see more of Luca's juggling talent on Instagram: @luca_haase_juggling 

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Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Nova Scotia Talent Trust announces new Curtis Botham Scholarship

The new $1,000 Curtis Botham Scholarship will be presented in 2022 to Talent Trust visual arts applicant, studying at NSCAD University in fine arts (drawing and painting), working towards a Bachelor's degree or doing one of NSCAD's residency programs.

Botham states: "My first scholarship from the Nova Scotia Talent Trust marked the beginning of an extremely transformative time in my life, where I realized that the awards, grants and residencies that I was too intimidated to apply for were actually within my reach; that it was possible to make a living as an artist with the support of organizations like the Nova Scotia Talent Trust, Arts Nova Scotia and others. After I graduated from NSCAD University, I saw a lot of very talented artists who I fervently believe could get grants as well, but feel similar to how I did--that those things are only for highly accomplished, very traditional artists. For me, it was that first scholarship that showed me that I, along with many other artists, could do it. That art of all media and techniques were routinely given support. And this year, five years after graduating, I find myself in a position where I can finally give back, and hopefully light that ambitious spark in another artist. That's why I specified that my scholarship go towards an artist with relatively few accomplishments under their belt, while showing an untapped potential deserving of recognition. I hope it can offer the same encouragement that I needed to get started on a career as a professional artist."

Botham was the winner of the Charlotte Wilson-Hammond/VANS Award in 2017 and the 2011 Canada Games Young Artist of Excellence Award in 2018.

"Nova Scotia Talent Trust is incredibly grateful for the generous gift from former scholarship recipient Curtis Botham.  This scholarship will not only provide financial support for an emerging artist, but also a vote of confidence as they pursue their dreams.  It is wonderful to see the impact the scholarship had on Curtis' journey to become a professional artist, and truly inspirational to see him pay it forward to another emerging artist.  Thank you, Curtis!", states Andrea Urquhart, Executive Director NSTT.

About Curtis Botham
Curtis Botham graduated from NSCAD University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2017. Since then, he has won numerous grants and awards, including in 2018 the 2011 Canada Games Young Artists of Excellence Award and in 2017 the Charlotte Wilson-Hammond/VANS Award both through the Talent Trust, plus grants from Arts Nova Scotia and the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation.  
His artwork has been displayed in numerous galleries around Nova Scotia, as well as published in numerous journals and magazines, and some of his drawings are part of the permanent collection of the Nova Scotia Art Bank. 
In 2022, he plans on creating large-scale drawings focusing on Nova Scotia’s fishing industry and the people who work in it. 

To inquire about purchasing any of the displayed work, contact:; More of his artwork can be seen at:

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