Philanthropy award added to DACTA awards lineup

Reporter: Will McGuirk

The nomination process is closed for the 2013 Durham Art of Transition Creative Awards and now the party planning begins. The award ceremony takes place Nov. 8 at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa. There are six categories, including a new Philanthropy in the Arts award.
“The new award is to celebrate the people who have made a difference,” says Kerri King, Kerri, manager of Durham Tourism, “Who are the people who are driving change. Philanthropy can be an investment of time, an investment in a project.”
The other five awards are for Best Creative Collaboration, Best Story about Durham Region, Best Entertainment in Durham Region, Best Creative Innovation, Best Use of Creativity to advance Social and Environmental Sustainability.
This is the third year for the awards that began as part of the region’s Art of Transition initiative. Last year’s recipient of the Best Story award was Empty Cup Media. Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair started the video company in 2005.
“The largest thing it did for us was that the RMG screened the film we won for,” says Burwell. “That enabled us to apply for grants and we got our first grant this year. There are lots of trickle down things, more clients. We were on Rogers TV a few times and then we were asked by Durham College to be on their advisory board for their broadcasting program.”
He says that it was his entrepreneurial skills that the board was interested. Students would learn not just the media tools with the goal of working for someone else but also with the added bonus of learning to work for their selves.
King says Empty Cup Media were in a transitional stage at the time of their win and ended up hiring another person for their company.
“It’s creating a lot of new jobs. For me it’s all about celebrating the creative economy in Durham Region but also how is that creating jobs and creating awareness.”