meet the 2018 Here’s Nina Award Winners!

Each year at our annual awards gala and fundraiser, Here’s Nina Presented by ATB Financial, we celebrate five artists who have developmental disabilities or other barriers with Edmonton’s most exciting arts awards, The Ninas. Get to know this year’s winners below.

Thank you to our award sponsors, and to Lindisfarne Productions for the artists’ videos.


Realtors Community Foundation “Create” Award – Randy Stennes

In the fourteen years that Randy has been creating art at the Nina he has showed a truly impressive commitment to his artistic practice. He has filled countless sketchbooks, created paintings, prints, and digital animations, and continues to create outside our studios helping teach art classes with the Robinhood Association. In 2015, Randy was selected to travel to Scotland with the Nina to represent our artists at Project Ability’s International Disability Arts Summit.



Rotary Club of Edmonton North East “Connect” Award – Bonnie Blackburn

Bonnie’s artistic practice extends well beyond the Nina studios and through it she has found new community connections. In addition to the Nina Collective, she is involved in the Street Prints Collective, a group of inner city artists from diverse backgrounds who work together to create, promote, and sell their art. Bonnie incorporates found objects and repurposed materials in her work and is committed to contributing to the local arts community.



Mandel “Changed Life” Award – Lisa Reece

Creative expression has had a remarkable personal impact on Lisa. As she develops as an artist, her self-confidence and social skills develop harmoniously. Lisa has found great success with her ceramic pieces, which often feature detailed, repetitive patterns that require great focus and patience.




ATB Financial “Emerging Artist” Award – Jared Quinney

Within only a few days of joining the Nina, Jared blew artistic staff away with his engagement and enthusiasm. His eagerness to experiment with new mediums has lead to an already impressive body of work, and he is certain to achieve great things as he continues to develop as an artist.



2019 Stantec Artist of the Year – Vanessa Ryl

Our 2018 Artist of the Year was Ken Hayward. He passed away a few weeks after receiving this honor, but thanks to Stantec his artwork has
been viewed in various exhibits by thousands of people. He will remain in the hearts of all the staff and artists at the Nina.

The upcoming 2019 Stantec Artist of the year is Vanessa Ryl, who will have the opportunity to have her unbelievable talents displayed and enjoyed in various exhibits throughout 2019, including in Stantec’s new offices in downtown Edmonton.