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Canadian and U.S. Photographers Compete for 2010 Grange Prize
Marco A. Cruz, (Mexico, born 1957), Andrea Islas García, farmer, blind from cataracts, Buenavista Community, Municipality of Otumba, State of Mexico, 1998. Blind series, ink-jet print; 27.9 x 40.6 cm, 11 x 16 in. Collection/Courtesy of the artist © 2009 Marco A. Cruz.

TORONTO.- Four leading-edge photographers, two Canadian and two American, will have the opportunity to win the $50,000 Grange Prize, presented by Aeroplan and the Art Gallery of Ontario. Each year, The Grange Prize partners with one international art institution in an effort to recognize the best in Canadian and international photography — and 2010’s partner is the Museum of Contemporary Photography (MoCP) at Columbia College Chicago.

A joint panel of curatorial experts will meet to review the work of photographic artists from Canada and the U.S., narrowing the shortlist to four. Both the AGO and the MoCP will mount exhibitions of the shortlisted artists’ works this fall, and members of the public will vote onsite or online to determine the winner, who will be announced November 2, 2010 at a special event hosted by Aeroplan and the AGO.

Each of the four shortlisted artists will participate in a ten-day residency: the Canadian nominees will travel to the U.S., and the American artists will visit Canada. Additionally, the three artists who are not selected by the public to win the prize will receive $5,000 toward the creation of work developed during their residencies, bringing the total amount granted to photographic artists to $65,000. This makes The Grange Prize Canada’s largest photography prize. It is also the only major Canadian art prize voted on by the public.

“The AGO is a strong advocate for the diverse and innovative contemporary photographers working both in Canada and internationally,” says Matthew Teitelbaum, the AGO’s Michael and Sonja Koerner Director, and CEO. “The Grange Prize is a wonderful embodiment of that commitment, and we’re thrilled to partner with Aeroplan in bringing the work of these terrific artists to a global community.”

“We’re proud to be working with the AGO for a third year on The Grange Prize to promote the importance of photography as an art form,” says Vince Timpano, President and Chief Executive Officer, Aeroplan. “We look forward to celebrating the works of the selected artists as we encourage the public to take action and vote for their favourite photographer.”

The Grange Prize, now in its third year, was awarded to Mexican photographer Marco Antonio Cruz in 2009, and Winnipeg-based artist Sarah Anne Johnson in 2008, when the partner country was China. Johnson’s installation House on Fire was exhibited at the AGO in Summer 2009; with the generous support of art collector Michael F. Nesbitt, the Gallery acquired the installation in its entirety in September 2009.

On May 26, Aeroplan and the AGO will announce this year’s shortlist. The selection committee for the 2010 shortlist includes AGO assistant curator of photography Sophie Hackett; Toronto-based art collector and curator Dr. Kenneth Montague; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago associate curator Dominic Molon; and MoCP curator Karen Irvine.

Says Irvine, “The Museum of Contemporary Photography positions itself to be at the forefront of contemporary photography, so it’s very exciting for us serve as a partnering institution for the Grange Prize. The prize creates a unique dialogue between our two countries, and highlights some of the best photographers working in both the United States and Canada.”

Art Gallery of Ontario | 2010 Grange Prize | Matthew Teitelbaum |

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