Meet the Winners of the 1st Annual Mayor’s Dinner for the Arts

On Wednesday September 27th, 2017 two winners of awards for Visual Arts were named at ACOTTI’s 1st Annual “Mayor’s Dinner for the Arts”.

The inaugural ceremony presented two awards:  the RH Lindsay Award , a posthumous prize, in recognition of the many local artists who have passed on, and the Celia Kainz Award for artistic excellence and community involvement.

The first recipient of the R.H. Lindsay Award is the late Henry Vyfvinkel.

The late Henry Vyfvinkel

Henry is a fondly remembered artist and teacher who died in 2014.

Henry Vyfvinkel came to Canada from the Netherlands in March 1956. Soon after, he and his best friend Hank started their own business as house painters and decorators. He married his wife Juney in 1958 and moved to Brockville where he was employed as staff commercial artist for DuPont in 1965. In 1972 began teaching part time classes in commercial art at St. Lawrence College and he created the Summerarts program (which evolved to become the Summer School of the Arts). He later became a full time professor of Fine Arts and Teaching Master at the college until his retirement in 1994.

Over the years, Vyfvinkel received many awards and accolades for both his teaching and art. He was nominated by St Lawrence College for the Ontario Premier’s Award in 2005 for his work and contributions and also made an honourary citizen of the town of Lyn. In 2009 he was made a Life Member of the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour.

The RH Lindsay award was accepted on his behalf by his wife Juney.


Henry Vyfvinkel – Our People, Our Heritage



The first recipient of the Celia Kainz Award is Laurie Sponagle.

Artist Laurie Sponagle. photo courtesy of the artist

Laurie is an accomplished charcoal artist, an arts advocate, and a dynamic contributor to our artistic community. Laurie is a graduate of the University of Guelph where she specialized in Fine Arts. She has been awarded several grants for production and exhibition of her art from the Ontario Arts Council; worked and volunteered for CARFAC Ontario; has instructed Drawing and Business of Art at St Lawrence College; has been invited into high school art classrooms throughout our area to share her love for, and her technical mastery of, the medium of charcoal. She is a founding member of the local arts group TIArts,  and contributes to local arts organizations, her local library, and her son’s elementary school.

Laurie is a fun and energetic artist who loves to experience the art of others and share her passion with others. She is excited for new adventures and is always willing to help make an idea into a reality. Her in-home studio is currently busy with experiments for a new direction in her charcoal artwork.  She resides in Mallorytown with her husband Ray and her son Cameron.


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