2017 Choreographic Workshop

Tickets are on sale now for the 2017 Choreographic Workshop. It is a wonderful evening of talent that is happening on November 8th, 2017 at the Nancy Main Theatre at ESA. For ticket information, please visit, esainfo.ca or you are welcome to purchase tickets at the door at 6:00pm

Hello families of those participating in PD7!

I am writing to ask a favor of all parents of grade 12 parents of those in PD7 and invite you to a preliminary meeting Tuesday October 4 at 7pm in room 102.

We are about to engage in three very intense and important weeks and we need your help.

On October 28 we will be visited by 60+ post-secondary schools – the most ever! Programs from 6 countries and 3 continents are coming to see the work of 70 of our grade 12’s. Nothing like this happens anywhere else on the planet as far as we know. This is a truly memorable experience and perhaps the single most significant day of high school for participants.

The representatives from all of the attending schools use this opportunity to scout top picks for the 2016-2017 year. As far as we can figure, ESA students are offered more top scholarship offers than any other group of students on the planet – in large part because of Portfolio Day.

Many of the schools are spending thousands of dollars to fly representatives to Toronto just to meet your kids. The benefit on our end for those applying to these schools is significantly increased scholarship offers and a near perfect acceptance record – almost every one of our kids gets into every program they apply to.

It is vitally important that we make their time with us as enjoyable and rewarding as possible so that they support our kids during the application and scholarship process, and so that they want to come back to ESA next year. The personal relationships made during Portfolio Day are the foundation of vital support when it comes time to decide who gets what scholarship money.

We want to be prepared to prove that we are the top picks on the planet, and help the representatives have a really fantastic day. We can do a better job with your help.

I would like to ask you for three things.

– We are feeding and hydrating and caffeinating 110 representatives and 70 students for ten hours. Donations of special food and drink items would be enormously appreciated by all involved. Anyone who would like to contribute please feel free to drop off whatever you can the afternoon/evening of October 27 or the morning of October 28. We do have several folks with nut allergies so those should be avoided.

– We can really use your help setting up and taking down. This may be one of the largest art shows on the planet – something in the range of 3000 works – that is set up and seen and taken down in two days. We also need a builder at this point able to help us with several fixtures. Most of the install happens after school on October 26, and between noon and 10pm on Thursday October 27th. Take down begins at 9.30pm on Friday October28th and takes 1.5 hours. We endeavour to have every aspect of PD removed by the time we leave ready for the photographer to arrive Monday morning to document all the work.

– Advertising – one of the most exciting moments of Portfolio Day is at 7pm when the public is invited to join us for a look at what we have been up to. We have something in the neighbourhood of 1200 people attend that night. If you could please invite as many interested friends and family members as possible, it would greatly contribute to our experience. Anyone with press or media contacts is invited to make special invitations as we would appreciate the publicity. In the past we have had coverage by CBC news and the Toronto Star, etc. More of the same helps increase our reach for potential future applicants to the program.

Thank you all very much!
Matthew Varey

Register for Grade 8 Student Open House!

Registration is now open for students to attend the Grade 8 Open House on Wednesday, October 28th from 1 pm to 3 pm. Please note: this is for students only – parents may not accompany their child during the afternoon program. Parents may attend the evening Open House on Thursday, October 29th from 6 pm to 8:30 pm – click here for details.

To register for the afternoon Open House, please fill out this form:[gravityform id=”33″ title=”true” description=”true”]

Two Openings This Week!!!

Please join us for two openings this Thursday!

Life Is Like An Art Gallery Because There’s Lots of Space to Put Stuff opens this Thursday afternoon at 3.30pm at ESA in room 100 !

Room 100

Agnes Wong opens our first ever exhibition with Queen Specific Gallery from 6-7pm at 787 Queen Street West – supported by Dufflet Pastries

Queen Specific

Hope to see everyone out this Thursday!

Also – our annual ART SALE takes place Thursday May 21 from 3.30 – 8pm!

Art Sale

Summer Art Camp

I am happy to announce Summer Art Camp 2015 – running the second week of July at ESA from 9am to 3pm.

Camp 1 welcomes all new students to ESA. This camp is especially good for people entering our program in September. We are also happy to work with anyone interested in preparing their portfolio for ESA Audition Day 2016, and those wanting to experience our world class program. Camp 1 provides the opportunity to meet future classmates, become comfortable travelling to school, familiarize yourself with the ESA environment, and be introduced to a condensed version of our best in world program. It is really fun and we make some great work. ESA Camp 1 is open to anyone, even if not attending esava. ESAVA Camp 1 is limited to 30 places.

ESAVA Camp 2 is designed for current esava grade 9-11 students. It provides thirty hours of intensive studio time to focus on style development and portfolio production. We provide painting and drawing materials and studio space for all interested. This is a self-directed program for individual advancement.

For information visit http://www.esava.ca/summer-camp/ and to register or ask questions please email me at [email protected]

Thank you!
Matthew Varey

Exciting Times

For each of the past four years we have reported phenomenal results regarding scholarships and offers to our students. We may have received the highest number of “top” scholarships and the highest number of scholarship dollars per student of any art program in the world.

Post-secondary schools have a very small number of their “most prestigious” scholarships on offer annually. For one of our students to receive one of these scholarships is an honor and true success. We are only half way into receiving offers but I wanted to share some news.

At time of writing, ESA Visual Art and Photography students have received 20 offers of a top or most-prestigious scholarship from four of the most significant schools in the world. Twenty of our kids have been chosen as the most desirable artists on the planet.

This number may double by May 1st. We were told by several school representatives on Portfolio Day that there is nothing like ESA on the planet, or that we are amongst the company of one or two other programs in the world. These numbers provide proof that this may be true.

This success comes with responsibility and we have great ambitions. I would like us to participate in Art Toronto this year. We would love our own exhibition space in the west end of the city. We want to help Toronto become the second most desirable place in the world for art education.

Thank you for coming to Art Talk 4 – we had 300+ people in attendance and ended with an emotional standing ovation. Videos will be posted on esava.ca Art Talk 5 needs a home and we will likely provide details soon.

We look forward to upcoming shows in the Contact Photography Festival opening 6-8pm May 22nd at Artscape Youngspace on Shaw St. This spring we will be exhibiting in New York and at the Albright Knox Museum in Buffalo. Grade 12 student Pia Graham will be exhibiting at the Saatchi Gallery in London, UK in April. The grade 12’s are hoping to exhibit one last time together so watch for an announcement. Our end of year show and sale is Thursday May 21st at 3.30pm.

Thank you for the continued support in helping us build esava! These are exciting times!

Matthew Varey
Instagram: esa_visual_art

Art Talk 4 Friday February 27

Art Talk 4 takes place in the OCADU Auditorium Friday February 27th, 2015 at 7pm.

ESA Visual Art students will speak about their connection to creativity and provide insight into their research and passions.

Art Talk 3 was a huge success! Art Talk 4 involves all new speaers! We hope to see you there!

This event is FREE

Need your Help part 2!!!

Please check out Alondra’s amazing video – she is hoping to win a full tuition scholarship to Parsons in New York – the more attention this video receives the better!

We could use your help viewing and liking it!

Dont forget about AT3 at OCADU 7pm Friday night!!


New Website!

I invite everyone to visit and spend time with the new ESA Visual Art website at: www.esava.ca

Here I will post upcoming events, images from all aspects of our various endeavors, links to the work of members of our increasingly large and global community, access to our Instagram and Twitter accounts, and a blog. This will be our community hub for the foreseeable future.

Remember to please join us for Art Talk 3 at OCADU – 7pm on Friday February 6th and Art Talk 4 on February 27th!

Matthew Varey

ESA at York U!

Everyone is invited to attend our first exhibition at York University.

The opening takes place this Thursday November 13th from 5-7pm





Thank you everyone who came out to support us on Friday night. There must have been 600 visitors in to see the show. The entire day was an outstanding success.

Students have been reporting back on acceptances to schools in North America and Europe. Stay tuned for updates.

Thank you all! Bravo!!

Matthew Varey


Invitation to Portfolio Day 5

I hope very much that you will join us to celebrate our Fifth Annual Portfolio Day on Friday November 7 from 6.45 to 8.15 pm.
You will see approximately 2000 works by 71 grade 12 students in our largest Portfolio Day to date.

All are welcome. It is a wonderful opportunity to get a sense of this next wave of thinkers and artists and to preview work that will be sold in May at our End of the Year Exhibition.

For those applying to ESA for Film or Visual Art in January, this is an excellent opportunity to get some ideas for your portfolio.

As well, please join us for our opening at the York University Special Projects Gallery on Thursday November 13th at 5pm.