The Sobey Art Award’s 2016 long list of nominees unveiled

The Sobey Art Foundation and the National Gallery of Canada announced today the long list of nominees for the 2016 Sobey Art Award, Canada’s prestigious contemporary art prize.

Each year the Sobey Art Award is awarded to a visual artist age 40 and under who has exhibited in a public or commercial art gallery within 18 months of being nominated. The 2016 curatorial jury panel has announced that the 25 artists vying for the combined $100,000 Cdn in prize money for the 2016 Sobey Art Award are:


  • Jordan Bennett (Stephenville Crossing, Newfoundland)
  • Ursula Johnson (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
  • Lisa Lipton (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
  • William Robinson (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
  • Jerry Ropson (Sackville, New Brunswick)


  • Olivia Boudreau (Montreal, Quebec)
  • Jessica Eaton (Montreal, Quebec)
  • Jon Rafman (Montreal, Quebec)
  • Karen Tam (Montreal, Quebec)
  • Hajra Waheed (Montreal, Quebec)


  • Kelly Jazvac (London, Ontario)
  • Annie MacDonell (Toronto, Ontario)
  • Meryl McMaster (Ottawa, Ontario)
  • Derek Sullivan (Toronto and Forest Mills, Ontario)
  • Charles Stankievech (Toronto, Ontario)


  • Brenda Draney (Edmonton, Alberta)
  • Mark Clintberg (Calgary, Alberta)
  • Zachari Logan (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan)
  • Mia Feuer (Winnipeg, Manitoba)
  • Eric Moschopedis and Mia Rushton (Calgary, Alberta)


  • Raymond Boisjoly (Vancouver, British Columbia)
  • Allison Hrabluik (Vancouver, British Columbia)
  • Mark Soo (Vancouver, BC, and Berlin, Germany)
  • Jeremy Shaw (Vancouver, BC, and Berlin, Germany)
  • Krista Belle Stewart (Douglas Lake, BC, and Brooklyn, New York)

The 2016 curatorial panel, chaired by the Gallery’s Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, Josée Drouin-Brisebois, is composed of one distinguished representative from each of Canada’s five regions and, for the first time, one international juror:  Pan Wendt, Curator at the Confederation Centre Art Gallery, for the Atlantic Provinces; Marie-Justine Snider, Curator of the collection at the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, for the Quebec region; Barbara Fischer, Executive Director and Chief Curator of the Art Museum at the University of Toronto, for the Ontario region; Naomi Potter, Director and Curator of the Esker Foundation, for the Prairies and the North region; Jonathan Middleton, Director and Curator of the Or Gallery, for the West Coast and Yukon;  and Nicolaus Schafhausen, Artistic Director at the Kunsthalle Wien, Austria.

“I’m delighted to be working with these distinguished curators from across the country and abroad and to have a much-needed conversation about engaging artistic practices in Canada”, said NGC’s Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, Josée Drouin-Brisebois. “The Sobey Art Award enables us to become better aware of the rich and diversified Canadian visual arts scenes and to showcase the talent of emerging and already established artists”, she added.

The 2016 short list of the Sobey Art Award will be announced June 1. Work by the short-listed artists will be exhibited at the National Gallery of Canada from October 6, 2016 to February 5, 2017. The winner of the 2016 Sobey Art Award will be announced at the Gallery during a gala event in November 2016. Twitter: @PrixSobeyAward

The Award will distribute a total of $100,000 Cdn, including a top award of $50,000, a $10,000 prize to each of the other short-listed artists, and $500 to each of the other long-listed artists.

About the Sobey Art Foundation

The Sobey Art Foundation was established in 1981 with a mandate to carry on the work of entrepreneur and business leader, the late Frank H. Sobey, to collect and preserve representative examples of 19th- and 20th-century Canadian art. The Foundation has since broadened its scope to support contemporary Canadian art through the Sobey Art Award. In one of the finest private collections of its kind, the Sobey Art Foundation has assembled outstanding examples from Canadian masters such as Cornelius Krieghoff, Tom Thomson and J.E.H. MacDonald. The collection is housed in an intimate setting at Crombie House, the former home of Frank Sobey and his wife Irene, in Pictou County, Nova Scotia. Tours are regularly scheduled throughout the summer months and by appointment year round.  

About the National Gallery of Canada

The National Gallery of Canada is home to the most important collections of historical and contemporary Canadian art. The Gallery also maintains Canada's premier collection of European Art from the 14th to the 21st century, as well as important works of American, Asian and Indigenous Art and renowned international collections of prints, drawings and photographs. In 2015, the National Gallery of Canada established the Canadian Photography Institute, a global multidisciplinary research centre dedicated to the history, evolution and future of photography. Created in 1880, the National Gallery of Canada has played a key role in Canadian culture for well over a century. Among its principal missions is to increase access to excellent works of art for all Canadians. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter @gallerydotca.

For all media enquiries, please contact:

Josée-Britanie Mallet
Senior Media and Public Relations Officer
National Gallery of Canada

Bernard Doucet
Sobey Art Foundation 
902.752.8371, ext. 2301