AUArts Alum Kablusiak Named Winner of $100,000 Sobey Art Award

Congratulations to Kablusiak (BFA ’16, Drawing), winner of the 2023 Sobey Art Award! Kablusiak first made the short list for the award in 2019.

Founded in 2002, the Sobey Art Award is funded by the Sobey Art Foundation (SAF) and organized and presented by the National Gallery of Canada (NGC). The Award propels artists' careers through financial support and recognition in Canada and beyond. 

This year, $400,000 was awarded: $100,000 to the overall winner, $25,000 to each shortlisted artist, and $10,000 to the remaining long-listed artists.

The five shortlisted artists — including Gabrielle L'Hirondelle Hill, Séamus Gallagher, Anahita Norouzi and Michèle Pearson Clarke — are featured in an exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada, on view until March 3, 2024.

The multidisciplinary artist Kablusiak, known professionally under only one name, was awarded the $100,000 prize at an evening gala in Ottawa hosted by the National Gallery of Canada and the Sobey Art Foundation.

The 2023 Sobey Art Award jury felt compelled by Kablusiak’s fearless and unapologetic practice that confounds old categories and art histories and points to new imaginaries. Their multidisciplinary vocabulary deploys the experience of being looked at without being seen that shapes Inuit and queer realities in both the art world and society at large. Their attention to materiality and embodiment, along with a critical use of humour, are world-building and -affirming. The jury welcomes the provocations that Kablusiak’s work introduces into prevailing languages of contemporary art.

- Jonathan Shaughnessy, NGC’s Director, Curatorial Initiatives, and Chair of the 2023 Sobey Award Jury