Ottawa – The City of Ottawa is pleased to announce that local artist Michael Schreier is the winner of the 2016 Karsh Award. Mayor Jim Watson will present the award to Mr. Schreier at a ceremony at the Karsh-Masson Gallery on September 15.
“Ottawa’s thriving community of fine art photographers is fortunate to have the influences of Yousuf and Malak Karsh and our city continues to enjoy the fruits of their extraordinary creativity,” said Mayor Watson. “The City is pleased to invest in its artists in order to ensure that the Karsh legacy in photography lives on.”
A jury of three arts professionals and peers selected Mr. Schreier for this award from an impressive list of nominated artists. The jury was comprised of Alain Paiement, artist in contemporary photography, Jeff Thomas, former Karsh Award recipient, and Eva Major-Marothy, retired Senior Curator of Acquisitions and research, at the Portrait Gallery of Canada.
In their statement, the jury salutes the excellence of Michael Schreier’s photographic work:
“Schreier has spent a lifetime investigating the expressive potential of the photographic image, moving from film-based to digital, while continuing to create works that are poetic, evocative and beautiful. His deliberate approach to photography has always been focussed on the act of photographing and on the image itself.”
Michael Schreier is a professional artist and photographer who has dedicated his considerable professional career to the celebration of both the public and private hero. He has contributed significantly to photographic practice in Ottawa through his art and through his extensive teaching and mentoring of young talent. Selected works have been represented in both public and private collections, including the Ottawa Art Gallery, the National Gallery of Canada, the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, amongst other galleries throughout North America.
“It’s especially gratifying to me that the award goes not only to a talented artist, but also to someone who gives back to his community by mentoring young artists,” said Councillor Diane Deans, Chair of the City’s Community and Protective Services Committee. “This ensures that, like the award’s namesakes, he is contributing to Ottawa’s artistic heritage today and for future generations.”
The Karsh-Masson Gallery will host the exhibition The Karsh Award 2016: Michael Schreier – Camera Obscura, from September 8 to October 16. An exhibition tour with the artist will be held in English on Sunday, September 25 at 2 p.m. All are welcome and admission is free.
Ottawa City Council established the Karsh Award in 2003 to honour the late photographers Yousuf and Malak Karsh. The award celebrates an enduring legacy of excellence in fine art photography in Ottawa. The $7,500 prize is presented every two years to an Ottawa artist for outstanding work in a photo-based medium.