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Meet our 2024 Valedictorian, Page Cowell

Construct by Page Cowell
Construct No. 1, 2024, sculpture and animation, 30.48 × 30.48 × 30.48cm

Page Cowell, who will graduate this year with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, Interdisciplinary Arts, has been chosen by the 2024 graduating class as their valedictorian. She is also a finalist for the 2024 Student Art Award

Page was born and raised in Tillsonburg, Ontario on the territory of the Anishinaabek, Haudenosaunee and Attawandaron peoples. Page is proud to come from a long line of working-class family who have been a model of diligence and an inspiration to her work. She is interested in making art that is accessible and relatable to those who don’t often get the chance to engage with it. She uses a variety of media, from kitchen equipment and drills to coloured pencils and mylar, to make sculptures, drawings, and animations which honour the proletariat.

Page received her foundation year arts certificate from the Yukon School of Visual Arts in 2021, where she participated in Yukon Riverside Arts Fest, Dawson City International Film Fest, and the Something Shows Artist Residency. She went on to continue her studies at NSCAD. Here, she has participated in exchanges, group shows at the Anna Leonowen’s Gallery, and had her first solo show, Construct. She has an interest in community arts, volunteering and working in her hometown arts centre, teaching youth art camps. After graduating, Page plans to make her way closer to home and find ways to rope others into art and acts of creation.

Page Cowell

What was one lesson you learned at NSCAD?

Paper doesn’t carry well in the wind…

In all seriousness, it is hard to pinpoint a specific lesson when the most important things I learned were rather gradual. I can say that the degree is not the most important thing I am walking away from NSCAD with.

Do you have any advice for current students?

Don’t take for granted the many like-minded, talented people that are around you at NSCAD. It is easy to keep your nose to the grindstone, but it is more likely that you will find the time to make work again in your life than it is to be surrounded by these many artists and fellow over-thinkers ever again. Ask questions. Initiate conversations. I have gotten some of the best advice in regards to art as well as life from my peers and mentors at NSCAD.

Could you speak to your approach to making art that is accessible and relatable through topic and materials and why that is so essential to your practice?

In my practice, I pay homage to the everyday. I don’t think art has to be in a gallery, purchased by a collector, or nominated for awards. I think people make things everyday, whether that is furniture, or decks, or spreadsheets, or lesson plans, or roofs, or car parts, or food. I don’t think art is any better than all of these things that we get to access everyday. Art adds so much more value to our lives if we can access it as easily as some of these things.

Your work is very interdisciplinary – how do you decide what medium works best for each project and where is it leading you nowadays?

The medium plays a big part of the message in my work. The best way to start a project is having something to say. It can take a lot of exploring before I land on the best vessel to carry my point. This typically involves research into the history and current associations with the topic I am working with.

Being able to have a community and audience at NSCAD has certainly elevated this process in being able to see how others engage and interpret the use of certain materials.

What’s your next big goal?

I am very lucky to have been able to attend art school. Not everyone is afforded the privilege to explore their passions or further their education. I feel that this opportunity comes with a certain amount of responsibility. A responsibility to myself to continue to find ways to make art, and a responsibility to others

to make space for their creativity and share what I have learned at NSCAD. My next big goal is to remain committed to these responsibilities while also staying fed, keeping the lights on, and laughing often.

You can follow Page Cowell at or on Instagram at page.cowell