IMA Endowment Fund

“Thank you for giving me the experience of a lifetime and helping an emerging artist take a giant leap forward.“
Crystalynn Tarr, 2010 scholarship recipient

In 2007, in recognition of its 30th Anniversary, IMA established an Endowment Fund in order to provide funding for scholarships to its programs. Funds for the endowment were raised through the generous donation of artworks by over thirty artists who took part in IMA’s 30×30 exhibition and auction. With matching funds from the Quesnel Community Foundation, the Vancouver Foundation and Heritage Canada, IMA’s endowment grew to $50,000. In 2011, IMA raised more funds for the endowment through the Ripe Exhibition and Auction, which celebrated the 10th Anniversary of the Toni Onley Artists Project.

The following Scholarships are provided through the IMA endowment Fund. Help IMA build this fund by contributing to any of the Scholarship Funds listed below. Call IMA for details (1-800-442-2787) or donate directly through by clicking here – remember to make a note as to where you want your endowment donation targeted to.

Current Scholarships

Sylvia Regehr (Graham) Memorial Scholarship to the Toni Onley Artists’ Project:


Sylvia Regehr (1962 – 2011) who was a local artist, past IMA board member and the 2010 recipient of the Sonia Cornwall Scholarship passed away in 2011 after a long battle with cancer. With initial donations by her husband Bill Graham and fellow artist Eliza Fry, IMA was able to establish this scholarship in her name to help an artist to attend the Toni Onley Artists’ Project.

Alan J. Karmazyn Scholarship Fund for Children and Youth:

Established in honour of artist and teacher A.J. Karmazyn, this fund provides scholarships for Children and Youth to IMA programs.

Sonia Cornwall Scholarship for the Toni Onley Artists’ Project:

Established in 2007 in memory of renowned Cariboo artist and Cowboy Hall of Fame inductee, Sonia Cornwall(1919 – 2006). The Sonia Cornwall Scholarship provides the full eight-day tuition to a visual artist living in the Cariboo to attend the Toni Onley Artists’ Project for Professional and Emerging Artists.

Born in 1919 in Kamloops, BC, Sonia Cornwall spent most of her days raising cattle with her family at the Onward Ranch just outside of Williams Lake. Her art, which reflects her life, depicts scenes of nature like the cattle grazing in vast and beautiful Cariboo landscape. Sonia followed in the footsteps of her mother who was also a painter and who studied amongst the likes of Group of Seven painter, A.Y. Jackson, who would often visit the Onward Ranch for painting excursions.

It was in this mix of nature and the hard working ranching life, along with the visiting painters and an artistic mother that Sonia developed her passion for painting and living in the rugged Cariboo hills. It is this pioneering spirit and love of the arts that Island Mountain Arts would like to honour Sonia Cornwall for, and in her memory provide an opportunity for an emerging Cariboo artist to be mentored in the visual arts at the Toni Onley Artists’ Project.

Ann Gillespie Scholarship For the IMA Harp School:

This scholarship was created in 2008 in memory of Ann Gillespie who was part of the Harp School in Wells for many years and was an invaluable supporter of Island Mountain Arts. As a way to remember the contributions that Ann made to the Harp movement in the north, as well as, to recognize her passion for the arts, Island Mountain Arts established of the Ann Gillespie Memorial Scholarship to provide support for students wanting to attend the IMA Harp School.

Tempest Grace Gale Scholarship for the IMA Songwriting Workshop:

Thanks to an initial contribution from the Iredale-Gray Family, IMA created this scholarship fund to go towards a musician wanting to attend the IMA Songwriting program. Tempest Grace Gale (1984 – 2008) died suddenly on November 18th, 2009 on Hornby Island. Tempest had been part of the ArtsWells Festival since 2006 doing an amazing array of artistic performance including, stilt walking, unicycling, fire spinning, spoken word poetry, singing, banjo playing and any combination of the above.

Joeseph Plaskett Scholarship for the Toni Onley Artists’ Project:

Joseph Plaskett Scholarship, provides the full tuition for one Canadian artist to attend the artists’ project. Born in New Westminster in 1918, artist of the Order of Canada, Joseph Plaskett visited the Cariboo often, including trips to Wells and Barkerville. Inspired by the Cariboo, he would come to paint and visit with his good friends at the Onward Ranch, including artist Sonia Cornwall (1919 – 2006). IMA is pleased to recognize the contributions of this senior Canadian artist to the growth of the arts in the Cariboo through the establishment of the Joseph Plaskett Scholarship.