By the time Ambera Wellmann decided to go to university at the age of 25 she was oh so ready.
"The process of doing my degree matured me, as a person and as an artist," says Ambera (BFA 2011). "NSCAD is where I made my greatest friends and felt I truly belonged to a community."
Arriving with the desire to become a better technical painter, Ambera soon discovered that would never be enough. Pushed by the course content in Historical and Critical Studies, she says she was challenged to open up the meaning in her work. "It’s hard to explain," she says, after a long day in the studio. "Instead of just ascribing meaning to the subject matter of a painting, I want to facilitate an open-endedness, a questioning for people. As I’m working, I’m thinking a lot about what I want the work to achieve, and I want my audience to experience the same engagement and criticality."
Untitled Oil on wood panel, 40.6 x 50.8 cm; 16 x 20 in
From Bridgewater, N.S., Ambera thrived at NSCAD University. She won several awards for scholarly achievement, including the NSCAD Dean’s Award of Academic Excellence in 2010 and the Nova Scotia Talent Trust Scholarship in 2009—to name a few—and displayed her work in solo exhibitions and group shows. Her paintings are now carried by Seeds Gallery in Halifax, Bodell Fahey Gallery in New York and Ingrid Mueller Gallery in Fredericton, N.B.
And the kudos continue to stream in. Just recently, she was named a regional winner in the BMO Financial Group’s Ist Art! Invitational, a student art competition for graduating students.
There can be no doubt that painting is what she is meant to do. "Art embraces anything in the world as its subject matter, and for that reason it will always excite and challenge me," she remarks.
Ambera Wellmann is the recipient of the Robert Pope Foundation Scholarship (Fall 2008), Millennium Foundation Scholarship (Fall 2008), Robert Pope Foundation Painting Scholarship (Fall 2009), Nova Scotia Talent Trust Scholarship Endowment (2009), the Joseph Beuys Memorial Scholarship (Fall 2010), Takao Tanabe Painting Scholarship (Fall 2010) and the Beacon Securities Scholarship (Fall 2010).