New Generation Photography Award 2020: The Winners

The winners of the 2020 New Generation Photography Award: Noah Friebel / Photo: John Wragg; Curtiss Randolph / Photo: Brendan Gore; and Katherine Takpannie / Photo: Fred Cattroll

Noah Friebel, Curtiss Randolph and Katherine Takpannie are the winners of the 2020 New Generation Photography Award. Their work explores narrative and spans themes such as documentation, fact and fiction, and the viewer's relationship to the image. Their images often situate figures in space to create tensions and challenge perceptions. Established in 2017 by the National Gallery of Canada in collaboration with Scotiabank, the award supports the careers of emerging artists, ages 35 and under, who create lens-based photographic work in Canada. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, their work will be exhibited at the National Gallery of Canada in 2021. 


Katherine Takpannie

Katherine Takpannie, Amautik, 2018, inkjet print. Collection of the artist. © Katherine Takpannie

Katherine Takpannie uses photography and performance to create powerfully lyrical imagery. Born in Montreal and living in Ottawa, she identifies as an “urban Inuk” and focuses her work around the complexities and nuances of Inuit life in a contemporary world. Takpannie situates figures in urban and landscape settings to break down preconceived notions of Indigenous identity and imposed barriers, resulting in photographs that address intimacy, beauty and presence. Her work has been exhibited at the Carleton University Art Gallery and the Art Gallery of Guelph.


Curtiss Randolph

Curtiss Randolph, The Absence of a Catch Bar, 2019, chromogenic print. Collection of the artist. © Curtiss Randolph

Born into a theatre family in Toronto, Curtiss Randolph has incorporated stage production into his work, combining it with faux documentary and gonzo (personalized) journalism. He creates visual stories – in part autobiographical or extensions of familiar experiences – that address personal struggle and resilience, social isolation and interaction. Working with photography, sound and installation, he experiments with crossovers and combinations of image and sound. A graduate of Ryerson University, he has exhibited work at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and as part of Toronto’s Gladstone Hotel art series.


Noah Friebel

Noah Friebel, Kiss and Cry, 2018. Digital display, media player, wood, 9 min 31 sec. Collection of Claudia Beck and Andrew Gruft. © Noah Friebel

Based in Vancouver, Noah Friebel works in film, video and photography, joining the rich artistic photo-conceptualist tradition that has become synonymous with the city’s art scene. In his photographic work, Friebel applies his interest in urban, historical and domestic architectural elements to explore structure and spatial relationships, applying conceptual or 3-dimensional framing to his photographs to create a window, gateway or architectural barrier that challenges the viewer's perception and concept of space. Having completed a Fine Arts degree at Emily Carr University of Art + Design in 2018, he has been featured in several shows, including Capture Photography Festival, the Trapp Projects and, most recently, Passage, his solo exhibition at Vancouver’s Republic Gallery.


Work by the winners of 2020 New Generation Photography Award will be featured in two group exhibitions next year, one in Toronto during Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival in May 2021, and the other at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa in October 2021. Share this article and subscribe to our newsletters to stay up-to-date on the latest articles, Gallery news, exhibitions and events, and to learn more about art in Canada.

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