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Opportunities for students and teachers

Young at Art


Application form - Available Now! Please read the guidelines before filling out the application form.

Young at Art is a juried art exhibition that brings the work of young visual artists to local art galleries across the City of Ottawa. The exhibition, held annually since 1996, represents a tremendous opportunity for the public exhibition and recognition of the creative efforts of these young local artists. Creators of accepted works will have their pieces displayed in a community gallery – often near where they live – and are eligible for a number of prizes and awards contributed by the City of Ottawa and Young at Art Sponsors.

Some of Ottawa’s best young artists will be displaying their work at three different community galleries; followed by a vernissage at each gallery and a citywide awards ceremony held at Centrepointe Theatres. Works selected for Young at Art 2017 will be displayed in April. Awards for outstanding work in various categories for all three exhibitions will be presented at the citywide awards ceremony held at Centrepointe Theatres, 101 Centrepointe Dr.


Visual artists between 12 to 19 years of age as of January 1, 2017 who live or go to school in Ottawa are eligible to enter Young at Art.


Young at Art is a rare opportunity for young artists unlike anything else in North America. City of Ottawa youth are encouraged to participate in a citywide, juried art exhibition that brings their remarkable artwork to local community art galleries.

What began in 1996 as an annual event run by artists based at the Kanata Civic Art Gallery has since become a citywide event coordinated by the City of Ottawa.

Submitted artwork enters a jury process which determines which pieces will be exhibited in the City of Ottawa's community galleries. Young at Art juries are a diverse mix of established artists from our community who help to deliver exciting, quality exhibitions based on common assessment criteria.

Artists of accepted works will have their piece displayed in a community gallery. In addition, a number of prizes for outstanding work are presented to young artists at the citywide awards ceremony.

City Awards

Awards in the following categories will be presented to participants in each region of the City:

  • Painting Junior (12 to 15 years) and Painting Senior (16 to 19 years)
  • Drawing Junior and Drawing Senior
  • 3-Dimensional Junior and 3-Dimensional Senior
  • Photography Junior and Photography Senior
  • Printmaking Junior and Printmaking Senior
  • Mixed Media Junior and Mixed Media Senior
  • Other Media (Pastel and Digital Media) Junior and Other Media Senior

Sponsored Awards

Local sponsors also donate awards. Past sponsors include: Corel, OMMA (Ottawa Mixed Media Artists), Arteast, AOE Arts Council, Ottawa School of Art, Algonquin College, Kanata Civic Art Gallery, Foyer Gallery, MIFO, various City Councillors and many more.

The Young at Art Summer Studio Award

Each year the Young at Art jurors select two artists to award use of a short term studio space.

Two recipients of the Young at Art short-term studio space will share an artist studio for the summer – July and August. This award provides the artists with the opportunity to continue with their art practice throughout the summer in a dedicated studio space. The studio is located in Stafford Studios, Unit 1 at the Nepean Creative Arts Center, 35 Stafford Rd., Bells Corners.


Exhibitions and Vernissages

East Ottawa
Salons A & B of Trinity Art Gallery
Shenkman Arts Centre, Lower Level
245 Centrum Blvd.Orleans

West Ottawa
Kanata Civic Art Gallery
John Mlacak Centre
2500 Campeau Drive

Central Ottawa
Atrium Art Gallery and Nepean Fine Arts League Exhibition Space
Ben Franklin Place
101 Centrepointe Dr.

Awards Ceremony

Centrepointe Theatres
101 Centrepointe Dr.

Sometimes an artist will live in one region of the City but go to school in another region. We give you a choice of exhibiting in either region. Your home or school address will dictate your exhibition venue.

What region do I live in? Please contact the Young at Art coordinator

What region is my school in?


Application form - Available Now! Please read the Guidelines before filling out the application form.

Electronic application form deadline: March 17, 2017
Artwork submission deadline: March 17, 2017 (electronically)

*Please submit both your application and artwork submission at once. If you have any questions, contact


East:                April 20 to May 15, 2017
West:               April 20 to May 14, 2017
Central:           April 21 to May 14, 2017

Vernissage Night

East:                April 23, 2017, 7 pm
West:               April 27, 2017, 7 pm
Central:           April 25, 2017, 7 pm

Artwork pickup

East:                May 16, 4:30 to 8:30 pm
West:               May 15, 2017, 4:30 to 8 pm
Central:           May 15, 2017, 4:30 to 8:30 pm

Citywide Awards Ceremony

Thursday May 4, 2017, 7 pm


Application forms will also be available in January at schools, community centres, and libraries. Please read the Guidelines before filling out the application form. The deadline for submitting application forms and artwork submission is Friday March 17, 2017. You may submit one piece of work only. Late applications will not be accepted.

New - Participating in Young at Art is FREE. No application fee is required.


Thank you for entering Young at Art 2017!

Below is some additional information about the jury process, as well as, a set of guidelines the judging committee will follow closely when evaluating submissions and determining the winners.

Jurying will be done from electronic submissions. It is vital to label your submission correctly (procedures stated below).

Note, it is encouraged to submit an artwork statement along with your work.

Please be sure to read all rules and information carefully. If you have any questions or concerns please contact the Young at Art Coordinator at


Participants are eligible to enter one piece of work for one of the following categories: Painting, Drawing, Three Dimensional, Photography, Printmaking, Mixed Media and Other (Pastel and Digital Media).

Winners will be granted the opportunity to exhibit their work in a community gallery. Secondary prizes of different levels may be presented to winners at the awards ceremony.

Young at Art is intended to promote and praise youth for their originality and talent in visual arts.  Judging criteria is based on originality, elements of design and composition, uniqueness of style, and the artist's skill with the medium chosen.

It is important to properly source your artwork. Originality is vital, however if the piece was inspired by another artist it needs to be stated in advance.

Members of the jury are all carefully selected and possess extensive background in arts, culture and/or arts education.

Submission Process

NEW - This year, application forms and artwork will be submitted together electronically on the same date, March 17, 2017.  Artwork will be submitted electronically prior to jurying. Please submit a good quality image of your work electronically using WeTransfer to

Only one high quality image per work. Exception: three-dimensional works may submit up to 3 images.

Please ensure to properly label your image, as follows: First and last name, followed by title of work, location (Central, East or West) and phone number used on the application form. (Example: firstname_lastname_title_location_phone, Julia_Smith_TheGrey_Central_6135992244.) 

Artwork statements are encouraged. Please include them with your electronic artwork submission. Requirements for statements: 300 words for senior works and 115 words for junior works. 

If you have been selected to participate in the exhibition, you will be contacted regarding artwork drop off information.

Electronic submission for artwork and the application form deadline is March 17, 2017.

Sale of Artwork

Artists may choose to sell their artwork during the exhibition. If your artwork is for sale please indicate a price on the application form. All sales transactions must be conducted between the artist and the purchaser. The artist is responsible for the pickup and delivery of artwork to the buyer. All purchased artwork must remain in the gallery until the end of the exhibition.


Members of the jury are all carefully selected and possess extensive background in arts, culture and/or arts education.

When judging the works, the jury considers several aspects such as limited gallery space and artistic criteria.  Please review the jury criteria. It is highly encouraged for all artists to review the criteria before submitting an entry.

Each judge will rate participant’s work on a 1-to-5 scale in the following main categories:

Originality – does the piece show uniqueness within its genre? Value will be given to those who can portray the inspiration within their work and show how that inspiration has been made into a new and creative concept. Unoriginal work will be disqualified. Direct copies from media sources are not acceptable.

Overall impression/ elements of Art - does the piece fit within the category chosen? Is the work pleasing to the eye?  Are lines, colour, space, form, media and texture used? Is the space used effectively?

Craftsmanship - Do all the art elements work together to create a unified design? Do all elements and factors work well together visually within the piece? Is there technique used within the piece?

Composition – are forms and abstract techniques used effectively? Are visual arts elements placed properly or accordingly to the work being achieved?

Other ways to participate

Become a fan!
Look for Young at Art/Artistes en herbe Ottawa on Facebook and @youngatartott on Instagram.
Follow us for important information and updates! 

Are you or one of your friends a musician?
You never know when an opportunity to perform will come along. Add your name to a pool of Ottawa youth musical performers. Send us your name, bio, and any links to videos and/or sound (mp3/SoundCloud) files. You may be selected to perform at a Young at Art awards ceremony or other community event. Contact with your interest.

Volunteering is extremely important to the success of Young at Art. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer with Young at Art please contact the Young at Art Volunteer Coordinator.

Contact Us

Young at Art Co-ordinator
Ben Franklin Place
613-580-2424 ext. 25690