Celebrating visual art of the human form / Célébrer l’art visuel de la forme humaine

About Figureworks

Figureworks is an annual juried art prize and celebration of the art of the human form held in Canada’s capital, Ottawa. Our mission is to cultivate and exhibit art of the human form. Each year, we bring together a community of artists passionate about the human figure, and celebrate their art through the Figureworks Prize.

Figureworks is a volunteer run not for profit Canadian corporation.

A few words from our founder

Throughout history there have always been artists who have pushed the boundaries of art and while doing so, surrounded themselves with controversy. Some have created ground breaking works that opened a vast array of new possibilities and ways for further growth. Others have gone in directions that might lead to a dead end. But whatever path the artist wishes to explore, it is good to have a solid base where artistic skill can be nurtured.

For the visual arts, the human figure has always been an excellent subject matter to train, maintain and explore artistic skill, and furthermore it continues to be an effective tool to communicate with oneself and/or the viewer. The oldest art work ever found is a 233 000 year old carved figurine (Berekhat Ram, Golan, Israel). Today artists continue to capture the human figure using many different techniques and materials, but many of them donít get the attention they deserve.

Figureworks aims to provide an opportunity to celebrate visual art of the human form. The organization puts the spotlight on artists, their works and the life models, which are essential to nurture their creativity and whose profession is an art on itself.

As the founder of Figureworks, I invite you to be a part of this movement. It is my wish for Figureworks to be a niche for everyone who loves art involving the human figure. I am pleased to say that the human figure continues to work for me.

Hilde Lambrechts

Figureworks Board

Figureworks is organized and governed by a dedicated group of board members and volunteers. We are always looking for more volunteers

Mark Stephenson, President

Mark is a visual artist and designer based in Ottawa Canada. His artworks include figurative drawings and paintings as well as social installation projects that incorporate audience participation and a wider variety of media. Sometimes his art is a combination of both.

Mark is a former board member for Arts Network Ottawa (formerly the AOE Arts Council) and is the Chief Designer at PageCloud.

You can find out more about Mark Stephenson at his web site at www.markbstephenson.com and LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/markstephenson/.

Hilde Labrechts, Founder and Vice President

Hilde Labrechts was born in Belgium, immigrated to the Netherlands in 1982 and subsequently to Ottawa, Canada in 2002.

Hilde received a PhD in Biology from the University of Utrecht (The Netherlands, 1993). While mainly self-taught, she started sculpting in stone in 1999. Hilde was a student at the Ottawa School of Art from 2007-2011 where she enrolled in Figure Drawing and Painting with Pamela Cockcroft-Lasserre (2007-2009) and Ceramic Sculpture with Jim Thomson (2009-2011). Inspired by her natural environment she works as a full-time visual artist in her home studio with ceramic sculpture as her main discipline since 2012, but when the kiln is on she draws the human figure predominantly with pen and ink.

Hilde's ceramics (and drawings) have been shown in both solo- and (juried) group exhibitions at commercial as well as public venues, including The Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery in Waterloo, ON. In 2013 she emerged internationally with shows at the New York Art Expo, the Southern Nevada Museum of Fine Art and the Florence biennale 2013. Hilde's work has been published in several international art books, in Ottawa based Guerilla Magazine, and in Fusion Magazine. In 2012 she was a finalist for the RBC-CAO Emerging Artist Award. Her work is in the collection of Global Affairs Canada as well as in private collections in Belgium, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and Canada.

You can find out more about Hilde Labrechts at her web site at H-art.ca.

Bryan Stephenson, Treasurer

Bryan has a broad background of achievement in leadership across operational, training and administrative environments in National Defence, private sector corporations and charities.

After retiring from the Canadian Forces as a Major-General in 1998, he was employed by a pension software company. In 2002, Bryan retired from his Senior Vice President position and established a private consulting business and worked on contracts as a senior project manager.

Starting in 2000, Bryan worked for a large charity in Toronto as Executive Director until 2017 and has helped numerous organizations achieve non-profit incorporation and charitable registration.

Sarah Marie Lacy, Board Member

You can find out more about Sarah Marie Lacy at her web site at www.smlacyart.com.

Shawn Philip Hunsdale, Board Member

Ran Yang, Board Member


Are you interested in joining our board or volunteering. We have open opportunities, email Mark Stephenson for more information.


Figureworks 2016 Winner

Peter Adams with his winning painting Half-Submerged (Eight Years Old Today)

See the other winners