Arts

Here's the 2022 Sobey Art Award shortlist

Considered one of the biggest honours in Canadian art, five finalists will compete for the $100,000 grand prize.

The five nominees for the grand prize have been announced

Collage of headshots of the artists Azza El Siddique, Divya Mehra, Stanley Février, Krystle Silverfox and Tyshan Wright.
Clockwise from top left: Azza El Siddique, Divya Mehra, Stanley Février, Krystle Silverfox, Tyshan Wright. (Photos courtesy of the Sobey Art Award)

Who's on the shortlist for the 2022 Sobey Art Award? The names of the five nominated artists were revealed earlier today by the Sobey Art Foundation and the National Gallery of Canada. 

As members of the shortlist, each nominee is awarded $25,000, and this fall, one of them will claim the grand prize of $100,000 — an amount that places the Sobey among the most valuable honours in the contemporary art world. 

On top of the prize money, the shortlisted artists will be celebrated in a group exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa. (Like the gala ceremony, the opening date for that show has yet to be announced.)

And as for the important detail of who, exactly, will be featured, the following artists — each representing a different region of the country — are this year's honourees.

Tyshan Wright (Atlantic)

Photo of coconut wrapped in twine and resting on a wooden spool, also wrapped in twine.
Tyshan Wright, Shaker, 2021. Pine, rope, coconut, traditional Maroon beads, 10 x 36 x 10 cm. © Tyshan Wright (Steve Farmer)

Stanley Février (Quebec)

Seven large black and white photos installed on a white gallery wall.
Stanley Février, Le travail d'Hercule [The Labours of Hercules], 2014. Digital prints, dimensions variable. © Stanley Février. Installation view from the exhibition Menm Vye Tintin. Les vies possibles [Same Old Shit: Possible Lives], at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (MNBAQ). (MNBAQ, Idra Labrie)

Azza El Siddique (Ontario)

Photo of artwork installed in a gallery. A series of white vessels are arranged on stacked metal shelves.
Azza El Siddique, Measure of one, 2020. Steel, expanded steel, water, unfired slip clay, slow-drip irrigation system, EPDM pond liner, cement bricks, 4.27 x 7.01 x 4.27 m. © Azza El Siddique. Installation view at the Gardiner Museum, Toronto. (Toni Hafkenscheid)

Divya Mehra (Prairies & North)

Photo of a cartoon on a city billboard.
Divya Mehra, Remember, say NO to discomfort, guilt, anguish or psychological distress (from the series, The End of You), 2021. Printed billboard commissioned for Add Space/Tulsa Artist Fellowship, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 2021, 3.17 x 6.9 m. © Divya Mehra (Richard Zimmerman)

Krystle Silverfox (West Coast & Yukon)

Still life photograph of objects arranged on maps and HBC napkins, shot in the woods.
Krystle Silverfox, Royal Tease, 2020. Inkjet print, 142.2 x 86.4 cm. © Krystle Silverfox (Courtesy of the artist)

Now in its 20th year, the winner of the Sobey Art Award is selected by a jury comprised of one international curator and five Canadian delegates, each representing the same regions reflected on the shortlist. Dr. Sasha Suda, director and CEO of the National Gallery of Canada, oversees the cohort. "As Chair of the Jury, I'm impressed by the strength and vision offered by each of these shortlisted artists," she said in a statement. 

This year's nominees were selected from a 25-person longlist which was revealed in May. Members of the longlist also receive prize money to the tune of $10,000 each. 

Now open to competitors of all ages, the Sobey was previously awarded to a Canadian artist under 40. The restrictions were eliminated in 2021. Past winners include Brian Jungen (2002), Annie Pootoogook (2006), Nadia Myre (2014) and, most recently, Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory (2021). In 2020, the prize was shared equally among the artists of the longlist.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Leah Collins

Senior Writer

Since 2015, Leah Collins has been senior writer at CBC Arts, covering Canadian visual art and digital culture in addition to producing CBC Arts’ weekly newsletter (Hi, Art!), which was nominated for a Digital Publishing Award in 2021. A graduate of Toronto Metropolitan University's journalism school (formerly Ryerson), Leah covered music and celebrity for Postmedia before arriving at CBC.

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