About

Michael Snow
Clothed Woman (In Memory of my Father) 1963
oil and lucite on canvas
152 x 386.2 cm
Purchased 1966
National Gallery of Canada

The National Gallery of Canada celebrates the laureates of the Governor General's Awards

Ottawa, Canada - March 17, 2003

PRESS RELEASE

 Le Musée des beaux-arts du Canada rend hommage aux lauréats des Prix du Gouverneur général 

The National Gallery of Canada is pleased to present an exhibition that pays tribute to the laureates of the Canada Council for the Arts' fourth annual Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts. The exhibition, comprised of some 12 works drawn mainly from the Gallery's permanent collection, will be on view in the Contemporary Galleries from 19 March to 4 May 2003. Admission is free.

This special exhibition offers a unique opportunity to discover the talents of these men and women who have achieved distinction in their careers in the visual or media arts. Media representatives are invited to attend the official opening of the exhibition, which will take place on Tuesday 18 March from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm in the Great Hall of the National Gallery.

The laureates
The winners of the Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts were chosen by an independent peer jury of artists and visual and media arts professionals from across Canada. Below is a list of the laureates and selected excerpts from the jury statements, which will also be included in the exhibition.

Manitoba artist Robert Archambeau "is an acknowledged master in the field of ceramics, with a national and international reputation… His award-winning ceramic work is a subtle blend of the traditional and the contemporary."

Based in Wolfville, N.S., artist Alex Colville has been producing works for more than 60 years, which have "quietly but convincingly become Canadian icons... His measured and ordered realism conveys intimacy, mystery and, at times, danger."

Vancouver artist Gathie Falk is one of the "most innovative and versatile artists to have emerged on the Canadian art scene in the last 30 years… Her loving focus on the ordinary is suffused with a sense of loss, of irony and of impermanence, and also with a terrible beauty."

Montreal artist Betty Goodwin's "determined embrace of drawing has left a strong mark on the Canadian art scene… Her trademark images of vests, shirts, gloves, various industrial artifacts and the human body speak of longing, loss, tragedy, memory and the struggle of hope and resilience."

"Walter Harris is one of the foremost exponents of Northwest Coast art… For more than 40 years, he has created a great body of work, including masks, totem poles, housefront paintings, sculptures and jewelry… (and) has been at the forefront of the revival of an art form that was under serious threat."

Vancouver artist Takao Tanabe " has followed a path that has taken him, almost seamlessly, from abstraction to landscape painting. His work speaks of tension, the force of nature and reconciliation. Tanabe's lifetime achievements also include his unwavering commitment to and encouragement of other artists…"

Suzanne Rivard Le Moyne is a winner in the "Outstanding Contribution" category. She is represented in the exhibition through texts. "Inspired by her own love and practice of art, she was, above all, dedicated to the artists. This was evident in her role as creator and instigator of the Canada Council Art Bank, in her encouragement of artist-run centres, and in her career as a teacher and arts administrator."

The Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts are Canada's foremost distinctions for excellence in the visual and media arts. The awards, which are funded and administrated by the Canada Council for the Arts, were presented for the first time in 2000.