The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation was created in 1955 by Charles Glass Greenshields, Q.C., a distinguished Montreal lawyer and amateur artist, in memory of his mother, Elizabeth.
Mr. Greenshields firmly believed that discipline, hard work and serious training in the traditional means of artistic expression were fundamental to the growth and development of the artist. His determination to help dedicated young artists and students pursue the mastery of the traditional techniques and workmanship in painting and sculpture prompted him to establish and endow a foundation for this purpose.
Charles Greenshields personally directed the Foundation that he created for the first 13 years of its existence and remained active in its organization until his death, in 1974. His vision and his mission live on through the foundation that he so generously endowed.
Mr. Greenshields directed that the funds of the Foundation be used to help young artists acquire the necessary training, skills and competence in the traditional artistic methods, specifically excluding all grants to those “who show clearly a disposition to use the purely abstract or non-objective method in their work.”
The philosophy outlined by Mr. Greenshields in his endowment has informed the mission of the Foundation over the previous 60 years and it continues to do so to this day.
The Foundation provides financial assistance, by way of grants, to young artists who are pursuing their studies or are in the early or developmental stage of their career, are working in a representational style of painting, drawing, sculpture or printmaking, and demonstrate the determination and talent to pursue a lifetime career in their art practice.The Foundation does not provide funding for the pursuit of abstract or non-objective art.
The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation grant is one of the most prestigious grants available to emerging figurative artists, as well as one of the most substantial. It is one of the longest standing, with an illustrious history of recipients spanning more than half a century. It is also unique in its scope, in that it is available to students and artists around the world.
To date, the Foundation has provided financial assistance to some 1900 students and artists in 40 countries. Its grantees are renowned artists, both nationally and internationally, as well as highly respected art professors, teachers and mentors. The Foundation is extremely proud of its grantees and of their accomplishments. A selection of the works of some of the Foundation’s previous grantees can be found in the Gallery.
First grants are in the amount of CAD $15,000 each. Subsequent grants are in the amount of CAD $18,000 each. Grants are made directly to the beneficiaries, not to or through other organizations.
Grantees may not receive more than three grants in their lifetime.
Grants are awarded based solely on the information contained in the Application Form and the supporting documentation and material submitted with it. The Foundation does not conduct personal interviews. The decision of the Foundation is final and is not subject to review or appeal.
“The generous support of The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation has allowed me a year of focus, self-discipline, and creativity as I continue to explore my practice in the Masters of Fine Arts program at the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design. Your grant will allow me to continue to fund my artistic development in ways that would otherwise have been impossible.”— Elizabeth (Liz) Toohey-Wiese (2013 / 2014 Grantee)
“…The support I received from The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation was fundamental early in my career as a painter. I couldn't have got my early shows done without the financial assistance of the Foundation. I was able to concentrate 100% on my paintings rather than constantly worry about finding the money to be able to paint for the exhibitions I'd been offered.”— Jenny Saville (1993 / 1996 Grantee)
“…Can I take this opportunity to express my profound gratitude to The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation. The award allowed me to paint solidly, intensely and without interruption for over two years after leaving Oxford. That period kick-started my career in a way that I have never forgotten.”— Sarah Gillespie (1985 Grantee)
“Receiving your grant has enabled me to meet, befriend and learn from the largest living influence on my work. The grant has also allowed me to gain publicity, meet the family of another enormous influence, travel the world, and, of course, make many more paintings than I would have been able to without the Foundation’s generosity and kindness. I am forever indebted to you. The past year has felt like a dream. Words cannot adequately express my gratitude."— Matthew Adelberg (2013 Grantee)
“I am deeply grateful for the support of The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation and am overjoyed to report the tremendous impact it has had on my artistic career over the past year. I have met or exceeded all of the goals I set for myself during this funding period. I have created a large body of work that represents a new phase in my artistic output. This work has also garnered the type of attention that means that the audience for my work has grown substantially, and will continue to grow in the future.”— Kristy Gordon (2009 / 2013 / 2015 Grantee)
The Gallery features a selection of the works of some of the grantees of the Foundation.
To see what our grantees are up to, click here.
The Foundation will only fund young artists who are pursuing their studies or are in the early or developmental stage of their career, are working in a representational style of painting, drawing, sculpture or printmaking, and demonstrate the determination and talent to pursue a lifetime career in their art practice.
The Foundation does not provide funding for the pursuit of abstract or non-objective art.
Style & Discipline
Applicants must work within a representational style of painting, drawing, sculpture or printmaking. No other artistic activities or disciplines are funded.
The following, in particular, are not within the mandate of the Foundation and are not eligible for a grant: illustration; graphic design; photography; animation; video art; film; digital art; crafts; decorative arts; any work that uses a photograph or digital image as the principal medium or that is produced using computer software or graphics; and any work or activity that falls primarily into any of the foregoing categories.
Applicants must be in the early stage of their career, either as a student or as an emerging artist in the process of launching their career. Grants are not intended as work or project grants for more experienced or mature artists.
The Foundation has no geographic, citizenship or residency requirements; its grants are available to eligible applicants from around the world.
Applicants must be at least 18 years of age to be eligible to apply and may not be older than 41 years of age at the time of submitting their application for a first grant.
Candidates who have previously received a grant may apply for a further grant after the age of 41, provided that they continue to meet all other eligibility requirements.
The Foundation welcomes applications throughout the year; there is no deadline for filing an application.
Previous Applicants / Grantees
Grantees who have complied with the terms and conditions of a grant previously awarded to them by the Foundation may apply for a second or third grant one year after (i) the award of their previous grant, or (ii) the rejection of their most recent application.
Applicants who have previously applied for, but not received, a grant may reapply two years after the date on which their previous application was rejected.
Applicants must be individuals applying on their own behalf; applications may not be submitted for the benefit or on behalf of any other person. Artistic groups, collectives and organizations are not eligible, nor are individuals permitted to apply on their behalf.
Please refer to the FAQs found on this website for further information on the Foundation’s eligibility requirements.
In order to apply for a grant, an applicant must use the application accessed from this site. No other form of application will be accepted.
Applications must be completed and submitted online. Applications submitted in any other manner, including by email, mail or otherwise, will not be accepted.
Applicants must provide all of the information and upload all of the material and documentation required for the application. This includes:
All documents and material (including the letter of reference) must be submitted in French or in English. Documents or material in another language must be provided to the Foundation in their original language, along with a French or English translation. An official translation of certain documents is required; these include all documents relating to the applicant's proof of identity, proof of acceptance to a program of study or training, where required, and the letter of reference.
Submitting an application requires a significant investment of time by the applicant and his or her referee. We ask that only serious and committed candidates apply.
Prior to starting an application, please carefully review all of the information on our website, including “Eligibility”, “How to Apply”, and the FAQs, to ensure that you are eligible to apply and that you understand the application process.
Candidates may only access the application by creating an account and completing an eligibility questionnaire. To create an account and start an application, or to return to an application that you have already started, click below.
Peter Harris (Canada, 2005 / 2012) is exhibiting his recent works in a solo exhibition, Exit Bonaventure and other observations, at Galerie D’Este in Montreal, Quebec from March 5 to 29, 2020.
Stephanie Temma Hier (Canada, 2019) has a solo exhibition, Spring Now Comes Unheralded, at Franz Kaka Gallery in Toronto, Ontario from March 6 to 28, 2020.
Ivana Stulic (Croatia, 2018 / 2019) is part of a group show, The Unseen, an exhibition of 80 works celebrating female artists, at Stone Sparrow NYC, in New York, New York from March 4 to 30, 2020.
Zohar Fraiman (Israel, 2014) will be exhibiting in a trio exhibition at Galerie Russi Klenner in Berlin, Germany from March 14 to April 11, 2020.
Jenny Saville (UK, 1993 / 1996) is exhibiting in Inspiration-Iconic Works. The exhibition, which is being held at the Nationalmuseum in Stockholm, Norway from February 20 through May 17, 2020, features contemporary art side by side with classical works from the Museum’s collection.
Medrie MacPhee (Canada, 1982), Amy Bennett (USA, 2004) and Nathlie Provosty (USA, 2001 / 2003) are exhibiting in The American Academy of Arts and Letters’ 2020 Invitational Exhibition of Visual Arts. The exhibition is on view at the Academy’s galleries in New York, New York from March 5 to April 5, 2020.
Flora Yuknovich (UK, 2013 / 2016) has a solo exhibition, Fête Galante, at Blenheim Walk Gallery, Leeds Arts University, Leeds UK from February 28 to April 9, 2020.
Isabel Barber (USA, 2016 /2017 / 2018) is part of a group exhibition, FOOD SHOW, at SFA Projects in New York, New York from March 4 to March 29, 2020.
Daina Higgins (USA, 2019) is part of two upcoming group exhibitions: The Stillness of the City, at Cerulean Arts Gallery in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from February 26 to March 22, 2020; and Inspired Reunion, at Shot Tower Gallery in Columbus, Ohio from March 10 to April 17, 2020.
Danica Lundy (Canada, 2015 / 2017 / 2019) is exhibiting in Alone in a Crowd, a group show at 1969 Gallery in New York, New York from March 1 to April 12, 2020.
Luke Baggott (South Africa, 2017 / 2018 / 2019) is having a solo exhibition, Tapestry of Discord, from February 20 to March 28, 2020 at Steven Amedee Gallery, New York, New York.
Jemma Gunning (UK, 2019) and Anne Desmet (UK, 1989 / 1996 / 2007) are exhibiting in the fifth edition of the Great Print Exhibition, the largest exhibition of original print in the UK, being held at Rheged Centre, Redhills, Penrith, Cumbria from December 6, 2019 to March 8, 2020. Jemma is also participating in an upcoming two-person exhibition, The Fading City, at the Hive in Birmingham, UK from March 2 to 14, 2020.
The recipient of the Nick Novak Fellowship Residency for 2018 / 2019 from Open Studio in Toronto, Ontario, Agata Derda (Poland / Canada, 2018) will be holding her Fellowship exhibition, Afterdark, at Open Studio from February 14 to March 14, 2020.
Ishbel Myerscough (UK, 1991 / 1993 / 1999) will have a solo exhibition, Grief, Longing, and Love, at Flowers Gallery London from March 4 to April 11, 2020.
Hunt Slonem (USA, 1976) has a solo exhibition at GdB Toronto, in Toronto, Ontario from February 27 to March 10, 2020. His upcoming exhibitions include shows in Latvia and Bulgaria, as well as throughout the U.S.
Shannon Cartier Lucy (USA, 2019) is holding two solo exhibitions: Home is a crossword puzzle I can't solve, from January 18 to March 8, 2020, at Lubov NYC in New York, New York; and Woman with Machete, from February 8 through March 21, 2020, at De Boer Gallery in Los Angeles, California.
Michael Thompson (Canada, 1977 /1978) is exhibiting in two upcoming shows at Mira Godard Gallery in Toronto, Ontario. He will be part of a group show, Spirit Doubles, from March 7 to 28, 2020, and will have a solo exhibition of his new work, from May 30 to July 4, 2020.
Ludovic Cleroux (Canada, 2015 / 2017 / 2019) has a solo exhibition, Ludovic Cléroux: 5155 Rue d’Iberville Paintings, curated by David Elliott, at FOFA Gallery of Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec. The exhibition is on view from March 2 to April 10, 2020.
Lorraine Simms (Canada, 1981) and Jude Griebel (Canada, 2014 / 2015 / 2017) are exhibiting in a two-person exhibition, Documents of Collapse, Sculptures by Jude Griebel and drawings by Lorraine Simms, at Beatty Biodiversity Museum, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C. from November 21, 2019 to April 19, 2020.
Angela Fraleigh (USA, 2017) has a solo exhibition, Sound the Deep Waters, at the Delaware Museum of Art in Wilmington, Delaware. The exhibition is on view from October 5, 2019 to April 12, 2020.