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Susan Tooke to act as spokesperson for visual artists in Canada

Halifax artist Susan Tooke was chosen to be the spokesperson for visual artists in Canada at CARFAC’s annual meeting, held this year in Saskatoon. Tooke takes over from Saskatoon artist Grant McConnell, who has been president of CARFAC since 2011.

“It is now more critical than ever for artists to stand together and work for the right to earn a living wage.” said Tooke.

New faces include Ottawa artist Sanjeev Sivarulrasa as Treasurer and New Brunswick artist Serge V. Richard as the Maritimes’ representative. Artist Ingrid Percy of Corner Brook, Newfoundland becomes Vice-President, and artist Paddy Lamb completes the Executive as Secretary.

About Susan Tooke

Nova Scotian artist Susan Tooke works in painting, media arts and book illustration. She received her formal artistic training from Virginia Commonwealth University and the Master’s of Media Studies program at the New School in New York City.

Chosen for a media arts scholarship by the Centre for Art Tapes (2014-15), she is currently working with sound, video and sensors to create virtual environments based on threatened wilderness spaces.

Susan is a four-time winner of the Lillian Shepherd Award for Excellence in Illustration for her contributions to children’s literature.

Her volunteer work includes Past President of CARFAC Maritimes, board member of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, and board member of the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council, an advisory board on arts policy to the Nova Scotia government.

CARFAC is guided by a board made up of regional representatives, and several members at large. The time commitment donated by these artists during their terms constitutes a substantial contribution to CARFAC as a national organization.

Artists overwhelmingly approve Canada’s first labour agreement with the National Gallery

Artists across Canada have voted in record numbers to ratify Canada’s first scale agreement for visual artists at the National Gallery of Canada.

Major gains have been advanced for artists through this agreement, which sets out mandatory minimum fees and working conditions offered to artists by the gallery. Artists remain free to negotiate above these minimums, but they can never be offered less.

The agreement includes significant increases in fees paid for temporary exhibitions (for example, $8,250 for a solo exhibition, and $16,500 to represent Canada at the Venice Biennale), and the gallery is now paying CARFAC’s recommended rates for image reproductions, with some exceptions. Additionally, artists will be compensated for professional services offered to the gallery, including preparation and installation of an exhibition, and providing lectures and public presentations.

“We would like to thank our members for voting and for the commitment you have shown to the importance of this agreement,” said CARFAC president, Grant McConnell.

“The results of this vote indicate artists’ confidence in CARFAC and RAAV as bargaining representatives, as well as the certainty that we have achieved a fair and reasonable agreement with the National Gallery of Canada,” said RAAV president, Manon Pelletier.

The agreement will be in place for 3 years, and includes a 1.5% annual increase. The entire agreement, including contracts and fee schedules, will be posted on CARFAC and RAAV’s websites: and

The vote on this agreement closed on February 23rd at 5pm EST. Ballots voted on by CARFAC members were delivered to external vote scrutinizers Welch LLP, who reported back to us on February 24th that our members were overwhelmingly in favour of ratifying the terms of settlement negotiated between CARFAC and the National Gallery of Canada. In Quebec, RAAV conducted an online vote, collected externally by Sémato. On February 23rd, Sémato informed RAAV that artists in Quebec unanimously approved the agreement.

CARFAC’s voting stats are as follows:

  • 1858 ballots were distributed to eligible artist voting members in good standing
  • 976 ballots were received. The return rate of 53% far surpasses our legal voting requirements.
  • 974 votes cast approving the terms of settlement, representing a 99.8% approval rate.
  • 2 votes cast opposed to the terms of settlement, representing 0.2% of the vote.

Susan Tooke

Susan Tooke is President of the CARFAC national board as well as Past President of CARFAC Maritimes.  She is also a member of the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council, an advisory body to the Nova Scotia provincial government on arts policy. Her artistic practice includes painting, illustration and media arts.

Georgette Bourgeois

Georgette Bourgeois was born and grew up in downtown Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. Her father, Thomas Bourgeois, was a professional photographer. Her mother, Anna (Bourque) Bourgeois, was a visual artist as well as a pianist. Both of them gave her a passion for the arts; her mother was her first teacher. Georgette’s maternal grand-parents, with whom the family lived, helped her understand the collective past of Acadia. Their social involvement has had a substantial influence on the subject matter Bourgeois chooses to paint.

Georgette Bourgeois’ work which is mainly figurative reflects her interest for the history and evolution of Acadia. The themes she chooses evoke Acadia, from its beginning, before and after the Deportation of 1755, to the contemporary Acadia which, because of its history, has become international.

Charlotte Wilson-Hammond

Charlotte Wilson-Hammond is a visual artist living and working in Nova Scotia for the past forty years. Awarded the Portia White Prize in 2004, Wilson-Hammond was elected to the RCA in 2006.

As a passionate advocate for the arts she currently serves on the Board of the Nova Scotia Talent Trust as well as the Cultural Federations of Nova Scotia, and is the Board of CARFAC Maritimes and is a Life Member of NSCAD University Board.

Wilson-Hammond explores images and associations with the land, earth and sea as well as the human form using mixed media to convey the depth of sensuality and fragility of the world.

Richard Rudnicki

Richard Rudnicki is an artist and an award winning picture book illustrator in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He paints landscapes, contemporary genre painting, and subjects from Canadian history. His media is acrylic, and pen and ink. Richard accepts commissions, and gives private classes and workshops. He speaks about his work at schools and conferences.

Dominique Cruchet

Dominique Cruchet was born in Chinon, France and divides his time between France and P.E.I. He has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Ottawa University, a Licence and a Master’s in Art History from Paris 1 Sorbonne University. He has exhibited internationally and his work is part of public and private collections in Canada and France.

CARFAC National AGM in Ottawa!

National Conference for Visual Artists
June 9th & 10th, Lord Elgin Hotel, Ottawa

National Art Law Conference
June 8th – 10th, Lord Elgin Hotel, Ottawa

The Canadian Artists’ Representation / Le Front des artistes canadiens (CARFAC) is pleased to invite visual artists from across Canada to attend our annual conference in Ottawa at the Lord Elgin Hotel.

This year, CARFAC is excited to be hosting two national conferences in Ottawa, one for visual artists and one for art lawyers – the first of its kind in Canada. Some events will overlap, but the two groups will split for specialized panels and breakout groups.