Advanced Studio Practice’s Guest Lecture Series is partnering with the Atlantic Centre for Creativity to provide a virtual experience to the annual series. The purpose of the Guest Lecture Series is to model successful contemporary practice to our students and to inform, inspire and ignite art and design dialogue and engagement in the greater public community. They are professional talks delivered by invited guest speakers on art, design and related visual practices.


  1. A platform for the presentation and advancement of professional artists, designers and fine craft practitioners.
  2. A time for dialogue about ideas and opportunities in the fields of contemporary practice.
  3. A celebration of creative and cultural riches that we hold in Atlantic Canada.

These noon-hour sessions celebrate the creative, cultural and academic achievements of artists, designers and fine craft practitioners.

The series is free and open to the public.
Join the Series Here on Facebook.
Watch the lectures on Zoom at this link:
Watch past lectures: nbccd YouTube

For further information or to receive updates, please contact:

This series is sponsored by the Sheila Hugh Mackay Foundation.



SEPTEMBER 17 Dr. John Leroux
SEPTEMBER 24 Mary Stewart
OCTOBER 1 Tony Merzettti
OCTOBER 8 Dr. Casey Burkholder
OCTOBER 15 Dr. Danielle Hogan
OCTOBER 22 Gillian Dykeman
OCTOBER 29 Thaddeus Holownia
NOVEMBER 5 Jillian Acreman
NOVEMBER 12 Charles Gaffney
NOVEMBER 19 Elizabeth Demerson
NOVEMBER 26 Tracy Austin
DECEMBER 3 Peter Thomas
DECEMBER 10 Jackie Bourque




Dr. John Leroux   |   September 17   |   WATCH HERE
Making it all matter: finding resonance and meaning in gallery exhibitions

We often have only one shot at connecting with the public when the visual arts are placed in front of them. When we get it right, it can transform lives and inspire deeply. If we don’t, we let meaning and connection slip away. How do we take gallery opportunities here in New Brunswick – however small – and make them matter?  Dr. John Leroux has practiced in the fields of architecture, visual art, history, curation, and education, and he is currently the manager of collections and exhibitions at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery.


Mary Stewart   |   September 24   |   WATCH HERE
The Parts and the Puzzle 

This presentation will explore three questions. First, how can our past experiences inform our current choices? Second, which current projects have the greatest potential? Third, how can our current actions set the stage for future growth? Professor Mary Stewart is an artist, author, editor and educator. Her artwork has been included in over 90 exhibitions, and she is the author of Launching The Imagination: A Comprehensive Guide to Basic Design. In connection with a Fulbright Fellowship she received in 2019, she helped to expand the Atlantic Centre for Creativity website and served as the guest editor for the first edition of its journal.


Tony Merzetti   |   October 1   |   WATCH HERE
The Accidental Filmmaker 

Tony will relate his story as an MBA graduate who turned his back on a traditional, safe, prosperous career in accounting or banking for the uncertain prospects of entering the world of film in New Brunswick in the 1980s. Through his journey, he will relate the life lessons he picked up on the way, and how he balanced film creation activities with paid work in the film sector. Tony Merzetti has been involved in the New Brunswick film community since the mid-80s. He is Executive Director of the NB Film Co-op, a part-time film lecturer at UNB, a filmmaker and crewperson on numerous films primarily in the fields of cinematography and editing.


Dr. Casey Burkholder   |   October 8   |   WATCH HERE
DIY Media Making, Activisms and Community Building within and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic

In this talk, Casey will highlight modes of shifting practices and seeking to create communities through art production and across social distances amidst Covid-19. Dr. Casey Burkholder is an Associate Professor at the University of New Brunswick, interested in critical teacher-education and participatory visual research. In choosing a research path at the intersection of resistance & activism, gender, inclusion, DIY media-making, and Social Studies education, Casey believes her work may contribute to ‘research as intervention’ (Mitchell, 2011) through participatory approaches to equity and social change.


Dr. Danielle Hogan   |   October 15   |   WATCH HERE
Showing Up for Scraps

Inspired by different networks of care, in this talk, Danielle speaks to the repercussions (both positive and negative) of affect, and how, when considered in relation to textiles in contemporary art, the affect often leads to a particular assessment of value, which she terms Femaffect.  Danielle Hogan (Ph.D.) is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, curator and practice-informed researcher. Currently, she is responsible for New Brunswick’s provincial art collection, collectionArtNB.


Gillian Dykeman   |   October 22   |   WATCH HERE
Good Vibrations: Art is Energy 

This talk will focus on Gillian’s recent artwork: Revolution Revolution, an exercise class, based performance. How do we better engineer our energetic outputs to formulate new ways of being…to radically reimagine what it is we’re doing with our lives? Our life-force? Our love?

Gillian Dykeman is a multi-disciplinary artist​, instructor, and arts writer​ based in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Dykeman’s artwork is grounded in intersectional feminism and performance-based practice with a focus on inviting in the radical imaginary.


Thaddeus Holownia   |   October 29   |   WATCH HERE
A Love Affair with Looking

Thaddeus Holownia is a visual artist, letterpress printer, publisher and professor emeritus after forty-one years at Mount Allison University in the department of fine arts. Holownia is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a Fulbright Fellow and an elected member of the RCA.


Jillian Acreman   |   November 5   |   WATCH HERE
Navigating the World of Short Films and Features 

In this talk, Jillian will lead us through the process of transitioning from directing short films to features, and how these two forms both differ and draw from one another. Jillian Acreman has been making short films since 2009 and recently wrote and directed her first feature-length film, “Queen of the Andes.” Acreman is currently an instructor of Digital Media and teaches in Foundation Visual Arts at NBCCD.


Charles Gaffney   |   November 12   |   WATCH HERE
Becoming an Indigenous Artist

This presentation explores the journey into and through the creative life as an Indigenous artist, honouring Indigenous ways of being and knowing. Charlie Gaffney is a Wolastoqiyik Visual Artist and Educator. Charlie has been carving since 1988 and was taught initially by master carver Ned Bear. Charlie has been the recipient of grants from the New Brunswick Arts Board for his Indigenous Mask and Paddle creations. His artwork is represented in private and Canadian Government collections also, throughout Asia, Australia, England and the USA. 


Elizabeth Demerson   |   November 19 |   WATCH HERE
Harvesting the Wild

Elizabeth Demerson talks about harvesting natural materials, like rock and ash, for utilizing in ceramic processes. Elizabeth Demerson is the Coordinating Instructor of the Ceramics Diploma program at NBCCD. Before teaching in Ceramics, she was the Coordinating Instructor for Indigenous Visual Arts. Liz has a Master of Arts in Socio-Cultural Anthropology from Concordia University, a Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts: Anthropology & Women’s Studies from the University of New Brunswick, and a Diploma in Fine Craft Ceramics from NBCCD.


Tracy Austin   |   November 26  |  WATCH HERE
Fashion as Craft and the Creative Process 

In this talk, Tracy expands upon her creative process and her career that includes both production and contemporary art. She will speak about the art of fashion, as well as its inclusion in the world of craft. Tracy Austin is a fashion artist who creates fully functioning miniature textile sculptures that capture emotion and visage. Her contemporary practice is inspired by nature and is fused with a dark and rich gothic style. She has worked at NBCCD for over 10 years and is the current Coordinating instructor of the fashion department.


Peter Thomas   |   December 3  |  WATCH HERE
An Interview with Peter Thomas: A Rhizomatic Journey through Stories and Reflections. 

In this informal discussion, guided by interview questions, Thomas will share stories and considerations on the creative life. Peter Thomas is internationally known as both an artist and a teacher. He has exhibited in exhibitions in Canada, the United States, Scotland and England. Peter obtained his first degree at the Edinburgh College of Art in Scotland, where he later completed a Post-Graduate Fellowship. He received a Master of Fine Art in ceramics and printmaking in 1967, from the prestigious Claremont Graduate School, a university dedicated to graduate research in California. Peter was Studio Head of Ceramics and is now instructing Fine Craft Ceramics at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design. 


Jackie Bourque |   December 10
What If?

This talk is about exploration, investigating change, embracing the new and ‘what if?’ of practice. Jackie Bourque has a Diploma in Textiles from NBCCD and has been weaving for 30 years. She is an Instructor of weaving at NBCCD, in addition to having a vibrant studio practice. Her production involves hand-dyed woven and silk scarves, as well as conceptual gallery exhibition work.  Jackie’s work was selected for the Beneath the Surface: Fundy National Park Residency. The photos she created were exhibited in four locations in New Brunswick – Fredericton, Sussex, Saint John, and Restigouche.