Here are the long-listed nominees for the 2022 Sobey Art Award

Nova Scotia’s Letitia Fraser is one of 25 artists nominated for this year’s Sobey Art Award. (Robert Short/CBC)

May 3, The Sobey Art Foundation and the National Gallery of Canada have announced the long list for the 2022 Sobey Art Award. The visual arts award was first presented in 2002 and previous winners include renowned artists such as Brian Jungen, Ursula Johnson and Kapwani Kiwanga.

The list is broken down by region – Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario, Prairies and North, and West Coast and Yukon – with each region having five candidates.

Twenty of the shortlisted artists will receive $10,000, four shortlisted artists will receive $25,000 and the grand prize winner will receive $100,000. This makes it one of the most generous prizes in Canada, and also impressive by global standards. (For comparison, the UK’s Turner Prize, to which the Sobey Art Award is sometimes compared, has a grand prize of £25,000, or about $40,000.)

In addition, the five shortlisted artists will participate in an exhibition at the National Gallery.

“The Sobey Art Award highlights the importance of contemporary art in Canadian society at large,” said Dr. Sasha Suda, Director and CEO of the National Gallery of Canada in a press release. . “As jury president, I was delighted to see so many brave and exciting artists nominated. Narrowing the list down to a long list was hard work, and I am extremely grateful to the jurors who had the great task of make this selection. The 2022 Sobey Art Award invites us to celebrate what contemporary artists bring to Canada today, while offering us optimism for tomorrow.”

The long list was selected by an independent jury made up of curators from five regions, as well as an international juror. The same jury will continue to participate for the remaining rounds of deliberation.

The 25 visual artists selected for the 2022 Sobey Art Award from the five regions of Canada are:


Tanya Bussé
Hannah Epstein
Letitia Fraser
Michelle Syllboy
Tyshan Wright

Heads or tails, by candidate Hannah Epstein. (Graham Isador)


Stanley February
Catherine Melancon
Michaëlle Sergile
Joshua Schwebel
Nicholas Williams

The Indian’s Frozen Computer by Nico Williams. (Mike Patten/Artist: Nico Williams)


Ghazaleh Avarzamani
Stephanie Temma Yesterday
Timothy Yanick Hunter
Laurie Kang
Azza El Siddique

“A Body Knots” by Laurie Kang. (Laurie Kang)

Prairies and North:

Catherine Boyer
Anna Binta Diallo
Anna Hawkin
Collective tīná gúyáńí (Deer Road)
Divya Mehra

inflatable attempt at the Taj Mahal by Divya Mehra (Blaine Campbell/Georgia Scherman Projects via Divya Mehra)

West Coast and Yukon:

Derya Akay
Rydel Cerezo
Karine Jones
Krystle Silver Fox
Manuel Axel Strain

In 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the committee opted to give each of the shortlisted artists $25,000, as what Suda called an effort to ensure “the short- and long-term preservation of the Canada’s contemporary art ecosystem in the face of the unknown.”

Until 2021, the Sobey Art Award was restricted to artists under the age of 40, but that age limit was removed last year by the award’s administrators. The 2021 prize was won by Nunavut artist, Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, 42.