Artist Profile


Taimi Poldmaa – Artist/Instructor, paints and teaches at Berkana Art Studio in Sault Ste. Marie,Ontario. In addition to formal art training, Taimi has studied extensively at Haliburton School of Art & Design, and most recently at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. With esteemed artists, Taimi studied Theory & Technique of the Group of Seven and Contemporary Abstract Painting. Other study includes Artist Education at York University and Fine Arts at Humber College and Sault College. Taimi teaches children & adults the elements of design, color and composition through comprehensive drawing and painting exercises. Students are encouraged to express their own feelings and vision, experimenting with the unfamiliar, stretching their understanding in new areas of the painting process.


My art discipline is visual art – I am an oil painter, currently painting the coastal landscape of Lake Superior, creating works of art representative of the landscape with abstractions of color, line, and shape. Born in London, England, my family immigrated to Canada, and eventually settled in northern Ontario, where my love of nature and the northern way of life began. I am motivated by the geography of the land, its Precambrian history and the mystical power of Lake Superior that captures the interest of everyone that visits its shores. The distinctive colours of rocks, pebbles, outcrops and cliffs and how the shifting of seasons alters the hues of woodland, skies and water, contributes to the dimensions of my paintings. How I organize the colour relationships of intensities and value, are the strengths in my paintings. My aim is to match the power and enchantment of the lake, recording nature in paint.


A recent series – A Northern Perspective – comprises painting the periphery of Lake Superior examining the geological phenomena of the region including man-made structures that have become part of local heritage. I am drawn to investigating the history and culture that this conveys. The area of study extends from Batchawana Bay, through the Lake Superior Provincial Park to Hattie Cove, Pukaskwa National Park, and following the north-western coastline of Lake Superior, ending at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.


An earlier series – Aspirations of the Soul – includes the coastal landscape from Gros Cap (at St. Mary’s River) to Michipicoten Harbour, Lake Superior, exploring bays, coves, and rock formations. My influences are Lawren Harris, A.J. Casson and most recently Casper D. Friedrich, Ivan Aivazovsky and J.M.W.Turner. I am intrigued by the Romantic painters and have been studying their techniques – applying it to recent work. I am especially interested in the use of light with strong contrasts. My new work is inspired by the Agawa Coastal Trail at near Agawa Rock. Contrasts of values and of textures will be dominant design principles in this new work with clear ties to nature yet embracing an emotional response to the subject, allowing the painting to move toward abstraction. This new series will be presented in 2018.




Perspectives from Here – 150 Artists from the North – Thunder Bay Art Gallery, Thunder Bay, Ontario June – September 2017

Progressions VI – Contemporary Landscape Exhibition 2016 – The McMichael Canadian Collection/Haliburton School of Art and Design Ontario Provincial Touring Exhibition

Progressions V – Contemporary Landscape Exhibition 2015 The McMichael Canadian Collection/ Haliburton School of Art & Design Ontario Provincial Touring Exhibition

A Northern Perspective – 2016 Solo Exhibition

Muskoka Place Gallery – Port Carling, Ontario August-October

Temiskaming Art Gallery – Hailebury, Ontario  March 02 – April 22, 2016

Studio 1921 – Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario May-June 2016

Elements – 2015 Sir Sandford Fleming Collage – Haliburton School of the Arts, Haliburton, Ont

Exploring Fields – 2015 Sir Sandford Fleming College – Haliburton School of the Arts, Haliburton

The North Now – 2014 Northern Ontario Juried Exhibition  October 24, 2014 – January 04, 2015 Thunder Bay Art Gallery – People’s Choice Award

All Out 2014 – An exhibition of works in oils, acrylics, and mixed media by the artists participating in the 2014 Advanced Individual Studies Program of the Haliburton School of the Arts, Sir Sandford Fleming College

Amalgam 2014 – An exhibition of works on paper in a variety of media by the artists participating in the 2014 Haliburton School of the Arts Advanced Individual Studies Program.

Progressions II Ontario Provincial Touring Exhibition 2014

Progressions II – Ontario Provincial Touring Exhibition 2013

Aspirations of the Soul – 2012 Solo Exhibition Art Gallery of Algoma, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario May-August 2012

Progression 2011 The McMichael Canadian Art Collection / Sir Sandford Fleming Ontario Provincial Touring Exhibition

Progression 2010 The McMichael Canadian Art Collection / Sir Sandford Fleming Provincial Touring Exhibition

Willisville Mountain Project 2009/10 – Touring Exhibit – The Willisville Mountain Project, a Northern Ontario multidisciplinary art project that showcased artwork by 45 artists from Ontario, Quebec and the U.S.




2017 K.M. Hunter Artist Award Finalist – Ontario Arts Foundation, Ontario Arts Council

The North Now – Northern Ontario Juried Exhibition – Thunder Bay Art Gallery – Peoples’ Choice Award

Winter Festival of the Arts The Art Gallery of Algoma – Award 3rd Prize 2014

Olive Graig Gallery – Alberta House Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan  Annual Juried Show – Award 2nd Place 2013

Festival of the Arts, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario – Award  Judges’ Choice 2003, Best Use of Color 2004, Honorable Mention 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008

Lacloche Art Show, Manitoulin Island – Award   Best Oil 2006

Olive Graig Gallery, Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan -Honorable Mention 2005




Arts Education Project – 2016/17 Ontario Arts Council

Exhibition Assistance – 2015 Ontario Arts Council

Professional Development – Northern Arts Grant 2015 Ontario Arts Council

Artists in Education Grant 2012/13Ontario Arts Council

New Work –  Northern Arts Grant 2013Ontario Arts Council

Emerging Artist Grant 2008Ontario Arts Council

Artists In Education Grant 2008/09Ontario Arts Council