The Don Wright Memorial Scholarship

Each year, St. Michael’s Printshop invites applications from emerging artists who wish to come to work at St. Michael’s Printshop for one year under the Don Wright Printmaking Scholarship.

First awarded in 1991, the Don Wright Scholarship was established in recognition of visual artist Don Wright for the valuable contribution he made to the development of St. Michael’s Printshop and the visual arts in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Don Wright Scholar for 2020-2021: Emily Critch

Emily Critch is an artist and curator of Mi’kmaq and settler ancestry from Elmastukwek, Ktaqmkuk Territory (Bay of Islands, Newfoundland). She received her BFA in Visual Arts from Memorial University of Newfoundland (2018). She has completed residencies with the Corner Brook Museum and Archives, St. Michael’s Printshop, and the Inaugural MOMUS Emerging Critics Residency. Her work has been supported by Arts NL and Canada Council for the Arts. Emily has exhibited her work with Grenfell Art Gallery, Eastern Edge Gallery, The Rooms, the Hafnarfjörður Centre of Culture and Fine Art (Iceland), and she is the 2020-2021 Don Wright Scholar at St. Michael’s Printshop.

Don Wright Scholar for 2019-2020: Hildur Jónasson

Born and raised in Reykjavík, Iceland and based out of Nelson, BC, Hildur Jónasson completed a post baccalaureate (undergraduate) degree in fine art printmaking in 2016 at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University (NSCAD).

Jónasson self describes as a printcentric, multi disciplinary contemporary artist. Her love of printmaking informs her art practice as she approaches her work with a printmaker’s eye. She explores themes of our relationship to nature at the intersection of climate change, natural phenomena, folklore/mythology, and the intangible powers of nature.

Jónasson’s work can range from small, jewel-like sculptures to large ephemeral print installations of ghost-like glaciers. Jónasson holds work in public collections and has exhibited in Canada, Reykjavík (Iceland) and New York. Hildur has participated as artist in residence at The Banff Centre, The Arctic Circle as well as The Toni Onley Artists’ Project. This September, Jónasson will be the scholar at St Michael´s Printshop in St John´s, Newfoundland, Canada for one year.

Eligibility for the Don Wright Memorial Scholarship

This program offers an emerging artist the opportunity to develop ideas and technical skills in a professional printmaking facility. One scholarship residency is offered each year. In order to qualify, applicants must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • Must reside in or near St. John’s Newfoundland and Labrador or be willing to relocate in order to maintain a regular presence in the studio and consistent art production schedule during the tenure of the scholarship.
  • Must have completed a Fine Arts Program of study in the last four years from a Canadian Institution. Eligible programs include Undergraduate (BFA), Post-Secondary Diploma, or demonstrate an equivalent amount of experience with certification. MFA students and graduates are not eligible.
  • Must demonstrate technical competence in one or more print processes available at St. Michael’s and must demonstrate innovation in the print medium more broadly: 

Conditions of the Residency

The scholarship recipient agrees to:

  • Maintain a consistent art production schedule for the one-year duration of the residency. Residencies typically start in September and run for 12 consecutive months.
  • Donate two prints from each edition* printed during the residency to St. Michael’s Printshop. One of these prints will be retained in the printshop’s archives, the other is used for fundraising purposes.
    * We appreciate that not all contemporary print practices conform to traditional editions and in such instances, we can work out alternative arrangements.
  • Assist with various studio activities throughout the year such as helping with Printshop activities such as workshops, exhibitions, fundraisers, etc…

Benefits of Scholarship

  • Free membership and rent-free 24-hour access to the Printshop for 12 months
  • $1,000 Artist Fee
  • Free enrolment in Visiting Artist Workshops
  • Exhibition in the SMP Gallery space at the end of the residency
  • Community engagement and professional development opportunities
  • Will provide letters of support to the recipient for applications to other funding sources

Submission Guidelines

The deadline for the 2020-21 DWS was 11:59 on Friday, May 1, 2020

The following support materials are part of the online application form, we recommend compiling and editing this information in a word processor and then copying and pasting into the form fields when you are ready to submit everything. 

  1. Artist Bio (150 words max)
  2. Summary (75 words max) – please provide a clear and concise overview of your project
  3. A detailed project proposal (2 pages max) that includes the following:
    – A project description explaining what you plan to make and the creative direction or goals you have for the project
    – A rough timeline for the execution of your project
    – Print medium(s) and materials you intend to work with
    – Significance to your creative practice/career – how this project will support your development as an artist
  4. How you propose to engage with the SMP and NL arts communities
  5. Artist Statement –  the concepts or themes you will be exploring with your artistic practice (250 words max)
  6. Names and contact information (phone number, email) for 2 professional references. 
  7. Artist’s CV (2 pages max) – an updated resume that confirms a professional arts practice. Please include contact information: email, phone number, address, province of residence 
  8. Image list (include title, medium, size, year made)

Image Submission Requirements:

  • 10 support images maximum, each file formatted at 72dpi, 1mb each, jpeg format
  • Please label your files numerically to correspond with your image list and use the following format: 00_Lastname_Title_year
  • For video support materials include a separate PDF with a video link 
  • Clips can be no longer than 5 minutes max 
  • Specify the start/end times for the clip you’d like watched 
  • Video links will count as one of your support images


The extended deadline to apply for the 2020-21 DWS was Friday, May 1, 2020, at 11:59 pm

As the submissions and programming for 2020 have been disrupted with the world pandemic, we are doing our best to be flexible with submissions and have extended the deadline. Please bear with us as we try to plan programming and accommodate our community as best as we can in such difficult times. Our members and their health are our priority.

As the deadline has been extended, all submissions will be juried by the SMP programming committee and notifications will be sent out within 1 week of the deadline.

All applicants will be notified of the outcome. 

Thank you for your interest in submitting your work to St. Michael’s Printshop. Please see our frequently asked questions (FAQ) page for more information about the Don Wright Scholarship and common questions associated with the application process. We’ve done our best to cover all our bases but please don’t hesitate to contact our staff during office hours if you require additional information or require feedback on your application. Please send queries as early as possible. If they arrive too near the deadline we may not be able to respond.


If you have questions that aren’t answered here, feel free to contact St. Michael’s Printshop (email: We will do our best to reply to all queries, but keep in mind that as the deadline approaches we may not have time to get back to you. 

Application process:

We know that the creative process is not always linear and that the actual work may change during the year-long project, but it is important for you to have an idea how your time will be broken down into steps to ensure steady progress and timely completion of the work. 

Our staff is happy to write letters of support for recipients planning on applying for grants or travel assistance from different municipal, provincial, federal funding bodies. 

Jury process and considerations:

Jurying is done by the Programming Committee, which is made up of artists at different stages of their careers. We understand that the applicants come from diverse backgrounds and have different experience and skill levels in writing proposals as well as developing their work, and we take that into account in our consideration.

The jury considers these aspects of the applications: 

  • Writing clarity 
  • Image documentation
  • Artistic merit
  • Feasibility of the project plan
  • Impact (artistic and career growth)

The jury will select and interview a shortlist of potential applicants

Studio Expectations:

  • The Don Wright scholar is required to familiarize themselves with the studio guidelines and to complete a mandatory studio orientation 
  • The Don Wright scholar must be able to work independently
  • All artists are responsible for obtaining and using the personal safety equipment needed for the proper handling of materials (gloves, respirators, etc.)
  • The behaviour of artists must be in compliance with establishing a safe and supportive working environment
  • Year-long personal storage space is available for Don Wright scholars, however, all produced work must be removed upon completion of the scholarship
  • St. Michael’s provides black and white inks, rags, solvents and chemistries to all studio users 
  • Artists are responsible for their own plates, paper, coloured inks, drawing materials etc.

Relocating to St. John’s NL

We appreciate that relocating to a new city is daunting and might be prohibitive to some applicants. We’ve put together some links to introduce you to life here in St. John’s and are happy to answer any questions you might have.

  • Memorial University has put together an excellent resource for relocation to St. John’s NL, we encourage you to review it if you are from away and are considering applying 
  • SMP is located in the Baird Building, a cultural hub in downtown St. John’s which houses independent artist studios, artist-run centres and collectives.
  • St. John’s has a small and vibrant arts community hosting many festivals year round including in addition to regular programming by cultural institutions such as The Rooms and Eastern Edge.
    • Hold Fast –  a contemporary arts festival organized by Eastern Edge 
    • Out of Earshot – A festival showcasing DIY and emerging music and arts

Previous Don Wright Scholars

  • Megan Wells 2018-2019
  • Lani Burshtein 2017-2018
  • Michael Ciesielski 2016-2017
  • Jesse Wardell 2015-2016
  • Amery Sandford 2014-2015
  • Virginia Mittford 2013-2014
  • April White 2012-2013
  • Audrey Hurd 2011-2012