Definitely Superior Art Gallery was selected as the Laureate winner at the prestigious Ontario Premier’s Awards For Excellence In The Arts on June 27, 2013. The awards recognize outstanding achievements of artists and arts organizations and their contributions to arts and culture in Ontario over a significant period of time. As the Laureate winner in the Arts Organization category, the gallery was awarded $50,000 – one of the largest monetary awards for arts organizations in Canada. The award was timely, given that 2013 marks the gallery’s 25th anniversary.
Definitely Superior Art Gallery is the only arts organization to be acknowledged from Thunder Bay and Northwestern Ontario as the Laureate winner in 2013, and as a three-time finalist for the Premier’s Awards in 2010, 2011 and 2013. According to David Karasiewicz, director of Definitely Superior Art Gallery, the group was “incredibly shocked, surprised and excited to say the least. A number of the jurors came up to us after the award and let us know that we were selected as finalists from close to 200 nominations, and the decision to choose us as Laureate was unanimous amongst the seven jurors.”
The jurors are multidisciplinary artists from across Ontario, and included Shy-Anne Hovorka, an award-winning aboriginal singer/songwriter from Northwestern Ontario. Karasiewicz said that Ontario Arts Council representatives and other attendees commented that it was a well-deserved award and that the gallery’s contributions are exceptional. “The award is also something the entire community can celebrate, as we wouldn’t have been able to develop to this point without the artists, volunteers, audiences, supporters and the City of Thunder Bay. Our City will be viewed in Ontario and Canada as a progressive and nurturing arts community which has cultivated a quality of life which serves as a catalyst for multidisciplinary contemporary arts,” said Karasiewicz.
Premiers Award Acceptance Speech: Micheal Chan, Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport; Lora Northway, Community/Youth Outreach Administrator; Renée Terpstra, Development/Administrator; Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario; David Karasiewicz, Director of Definitely Superior Art Gallery
Definitely Superior at the Premiers Award: Micheal Chan, Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport; David Karasiewicz, Director of Definitely Superior Art Gallery; Renée Terpstra, Development/Administrator; Lora Northway, Community/Youth Outreach Administrator; Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario