Four works have been selected as finalists for the 2019 Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award.
This unique prize is the largest cultural award based in Nova Scotia, and it seeks to honour exceptional works across all arts genres. The grand-prize winner will receive $22,000, while each finalist will receive $3,000.
Here are the four finalists:
Moose Fence, by Ursula Johnson, is a large-scale multimedia sculptural installation combining a large galvanized gate and cage with operatic lighting and additional visual elements. It is described by the jury as “astounding in its ability to distill every element of its conception into its realization.” The work was previously exhibited as part of the Sobey Art Award and was nominated by curator Sarah Fillmore of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.
In/Visible, by Charlotte Wilson-Hammond, is a series of 14 thematically linked large-scale drawings described as “painstaking, impressive, and extensive” by the jury. For it, the artist meticulously recoloured near-life-sized, de-saturated Mylar-printed photos of her own shadow on landscapes. The work was nominated by Ted Lind of ARTsPLACE.
Africville, by poet and writer Shauntay Grant and painter and illustrator Eva Campbell, is a children’s book celebrating the community of the same name, and its legacy. The jury calls it “a flawless pairing of words and imagery.” The book was previously a finalist for a Governor General’s Literary Award in Young People’s Literature. The book was nominated by Annick MacAskill of the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia.
Niche, by Basma Kavanagh, is a collection of poetry punctuated with field-journal illustrations and encyclopedia-style imagery by the author, who is also a visual artist. According to the jury, “The complexity of the work is remarkable, as is its ability to call out our atrocities while also illuminating the ways in which we may yet save ourselves.” This book was nominated by its author.
As is customary for this prize, members of the jury will be revealed after the final prize is announced.