2021 Jurors

World-renowned Canadian photographer Edward Burtynsky is the chair of a panel of three expert jury members for the 2021 Scotiabank Photography Award. This year’s jury includes: Sophie Hackett, Dr. Kenneth Montague, and Brian Sholis.

Photo credit: www.birgit-kleber.de

JURY CHAIR

Edward Burtynsky

Artist

Edward Burtynsky is known as one of Canada's most respected photographers. His remarkable photographic depictions of global industrial landscapes are included in the collections of over sixty major museums around the world, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in California.

Burtynsky was born in 1955 of Ukrainian heritage in St. Catharines, Ontario. He received his BAA in Photography/ Media Studies from Ryerson University in 1982, and in 1985 founded Toronto Image Works, a darkroom rental facility, custom photo laboratory, digital imaging and new media computer-training centre catering to all levels of Toronto's art community.

Early exposure to the sites and images of the General Motors plant in his hometown helped to formulate the development of his photographic work. His imagery explores the collective impact we as a species are having on the surface of the planet; an inspection of the human systems we've imposed onto natural landscapes.

Exhibitions include Water (2013) at the New Orleans Museum of Art & Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans, Louisiana (international touring exhibition), Oil (2009) at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. (five-year international touring show), China (toured 2005 - 2008), Manufactured Landscapes at the National Gallery of Canada (touring from 2003 - 2005), and Before the Flood (2003). Burtynsky's visually compelling works are currently being exhibited in solo and group exhibitions across Canada, the United States, Europe and Asia.

Edward Burtynsky has been the Chair of the Scotiabank Photography Jury since 2011 and is the current Chair of the Jury for 2017.

Sophie Hackett

Curator, Photography, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario

Sophie Hackett is the Curator, Photography at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) and adjunct faculty in Ryerson University’s master’s program in Film + Photography Preservation and Collections Management. Recent publications include “Queer Looking: Joan E. Biren’s Slide Shows” in Aperture (spring 2015), “Encounters in the Museum: The Experience of Photographic Objects” in the edited volume The “Public” Life of Photographs (Ryerson Image Centre and MIT Press, 2016), and “Far and Near: New Views of the Anthropocene” in Anthropocene: Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier (AGO and Goose Lane, 2018).

 

Hackett’s curatorial projects during her tenure at the AGO include Barbara Kruger: Untitled (It) (2010); Songs of the Future: Canadian Industrial Photographs, 1858 to Today (2011); Max Dean: Album, A Public Project (2012); What It Means To Be Seen: Photography and Queer Visibility and Fan the Flames: Queer Positions in Photography (2014); Introducing Suzy Lake (2014); Thomas Ruff: Object Relations (2016) and Outsiders: American Photography and Film, 1950s-1980s (2016). She was the lead juror for the AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize in 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2017. Hackett led the installation of new galleries dedicated the AGO’s photography collection, also in 2017. She most recently co-curated the exhibition Anthropocene, the latest project by collaborators Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier, at the AGO and the National Gallery of Canada in 2018.

 

Hackett was a 2017 Fellow with the Center for Curatorial Leadership.

Photo of Dr. Kenneth Montague

Dr. Kenneth Montague 

Art Collector & Curator

A graduate of the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Toronto, Dr. Kenneth Montague is a full-time dentist as well as an avid art collector, curator and founder of Wedge Curatorial Projects, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting contemporary art that explores black identity. Over the past decade, Wedge has produced many exhibitions, art projects and community workshops, including an art book entitled FLAVA (D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers) featuring his extensive photography collection.

Recently appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Art Gallery of Ontario and formerly a member of Advisory Board of the Ryerson Image Centre and the Tate Modern’s Africa Acquisitions Committee, Dr. Montague is a frequent lecturer and panelist at international symposiums, travelling to Africa, Europe and the Caribbean. At his alma mater, the University of Windsor, he has established The Dr. Kenneth Montague African Diaspora Scholarship, and through his Wedge Collection he is a well-known supporter of emerging contemporary African artists.

Brian Sholis

Brian Sholis

Editor, Curator/Writer

Brian Sholis is an editor, writer, and independent curator in Toronto with nearly twenty years’ experience in the fields of contemporary art and photography. He is currently curating “Art’s Biggest Stage: Collecting the Venice Biennale, 2007–2019” for the Clark Art Institute; consulting and editing for the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation; and consulting with Frontier, a Toronto design agency.

Sholis was most recently executive director of Gallery TPW in Toronto and, before that, was curator of photography at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Earlier in his career he worked as an editor at Artforum and at the Aperture Foundation. He is the author of the 2016 book Kentucky Renaissance: The Lexington Camera Club and Its Community, 1954–1974 and the editor of two previous anthologies published by the New Museum and by Sternberg Press. A longtime art critic, he has written catalogue essays for the Museum of Modern Art, the New Museum, and the Whitney Museum, all in New York; the Moderna Museet, Stockholm; the Tel Aviv Museum of Art; the Hayward Gallery, London; and the Guggenheim Bilbao, among other institutions, and his features, columns, and reviews have been published in Artforum, Frieze, Art in America, Aperture, and elsewhere.

Sholis has taught at the the Pratt Institute, Parsons the New School for Design, and other universities, and has been a visiting critic or guest lecturer at more than two dozen schools across North America. He holds an MA in American History from the Graduate Centre of the City University of New York and a BA in Urban Studies and Public Policy from Boston University.