Our editors’ weekly roundup of Canadian art news.
Renowned Inuit artist Tim Pitsiulak, best known for his expressive drawings of animals, died of pneumonia in Iqaluit on December 23. He was 49. To compose his images, Pitsiulak often worked with a camera—in some of his underwater scenes, he even included the GoPro camera he used. Pitsiulak was mentored by his aunt, the trailblazing artist Kenojuak Ashevak. In addition to drawing, Pitsiulak worked with printmaking, sculpting and jewellery-making. His drawing of belugas and a bowhead whale were featured on the 25-cent coin in 2013.
Artist Takao Tanabe, known for his meditative paintings of Canada’s West Coast, has established a new prize for painters in British Columbia. The annual award, which will be administered by the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, will give $7,500 to a mid-career artist. The inaugural Tanabe Prize will be presented to Vancouver artist Philippe Raphanel at a reception at Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver on January 13. Nominees will be selected by curators in BC, and there will be no application process.
Three artists and collectors were appointed to the Order of Canada, which recognizes the highest degree of merit and exceptional contributions to Canada, on December 30. Toronto author, collector and philanthropist Ash K. Prakash; Vancouver artist Rodney Graham; and Edmonton-based artist and educator Liz Ingram were all made Members of the Order of Canada.
Bill Clarke has been appointed associate director of Angell Gallery in Toronto. Clarke is the editor of art publication Magenta Magazine, and has written for outlets including Modern Painters, Art Review, ARTnews and Canadian Art. An avid collector of works on paper, Clarke was the director of the inaugural Edition Art Book Fair, which was organized in conjunction with the 2016 instalment of Art Toronto.