2021 Nominators

To ensure that the Scotiabank Photography Award is a Canada-wide peer driven search, nominators have been selected from a national sweep of experts in the fields of contemporary art, inclusive of art gallery directors, curators, practicing artists, professors, writers and critics.

They each nominate one candidate. The nominees will be adjudicated by three jurors with Edward Burtynsky as jury chair.

Photo: Carey Shaw

Rose Bouthillier 

Rose Bouthillier is a Canadian curator and writer based in Saskatoon. As Curator (Exhibitions) at Remai Modern, she has organized exhibitions with artists including Sara Cwynar, Zadie Xa, Shannon Te Ao, Puppies Puppies (Jade Kuriki Olivo), Dorothy Iannone, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Elaine-Cameron Weir and Faye HeavyShield, among others. Previously, she was Associate Curator & Publications Manager at moCa Cleveland, and served as a curatorial correspondent for the inaugural FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial of Contemporary Art (2018). While at moCa Cleveland, she oversaw projects and exhibitions by artists including Xavier Cha (in partnership with Frieze Film), Jessica Eaton, Tony Lewis, and Kevin Beasley, and a posthumous retrospective and monograph on Kirk Mangus. Her writing on art has been published by CURA., C Magazine, BlackFlash, frieze, Foam Magazine, Arthopper, esse, and Art Criticism & Other Short Stories. Bouthillier holds an MFA in Criticism & Curatorial Practice from OCAD University, a Diploma in Art History from the University of British Columbia, and a BFA in Photography from Emily Carr Institute of Art + Design.

Mireille Eagan 

Mireille Eagan is the Curator of Contemporary Art at The Rooms. Eagan has curated more than 100 exhibitions, individually or as co-curator, including the nationally touring retrospective “Mary Pratt,” “Mary Pratt: This Little Painting” at the National Gallery of Canada, the Terra Nova Art Foundation’s Collateral Project at the 55th Venice Biennale, and the two part exhibition “Future Possible: Art of Newfoundland and Labrador.” Eagan was also editor and lead author for the first comprehensive art history of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador (“Future Possible,” released in 2021). She received a Digital Publishing Awards’ Gold Medal in 2018 and the Critical Eye Award from VANL-CARFAC in 2017. Eagan holds a Master’s in Art History (Concordia University, 2008). 

Mona Filip

Mona Filip is the Director/Curator of the Koffler Gallery at the Koffler Centre of the Arts, Toronto. Over more than a decade leading the institution’s contemporary art program, Filip developed over 36 original projects, supporting the production of new works and introducing national and international artists to Toronto for the first time. From 2009 to 2013, she developed the Koffler Gallery Off-Site exhibition program – a series of site-specific projects presented across the city. Working with artists that mine the contemporary urban environment, its memory and multilayered histories to fuel dialogue on social issues, the Off-Site program explored the city as material and subject to be constantly created by and transformed through the interaction of art and audiences. In 2013, Filip launched a new venue for the Koffler Gallery at Artscape Youngplace in the repurposed Shaw Street Public School, with a curatorial program that continues to foster new artwork production and invites a cross-cultural dialogue around issues of identity, migration and place, promoting ideas of social justice and equity. Originally from Bucharest, Romania, Filip received her BFA from the Corcoran School of Art, Washington DC, and her MFA from SUNY at Buffalo. She has served on many granting and public art juries, as well as on the Board of Directors of Mercer Union, Toronto.

Dominique Fontaine 

Dominique Fontaine is a curator. In 2005, she founded aPOSteRIORI, a non-profit organization that focuses on curatorial research and innovation in the fields of documentation, development, production and the promotion of various contemporary artistic practices. She was a member of the International Selection Committee for DAK 'ART 98, the Biennial of Contemporary African Art and Curator for the Caribbean and South America. From 2013 to 2018, she was curator "Of Africa" program for Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). In 2013, she was a member of the international jury for the Permanent memorial to the Victims of Slavery and Transatlantic Trafficking at the United Nations (New York). 

Recent projects include: Here We Are Here: Black Canadian Contemporary, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, 2018, and Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 2018; Dineo Seshee Bopape: and-in. the light of this._______, Darling Foundry, Montreal, 2017; Repérages ou À la découverte de notre monde ou Sans titre, articule, Montreal, 2016; Between the earth and the sky, the possibility of everything, Scotiabank Nuit Blanche Toronto, 2014. Dominique Fontaine graduated in visual arts and arts administration from the University of Ottawa (Canada), and completed De Appel Curatorial Programme (Amsterdam, the Netherlands). She is a member of AICA Canada—International Art Critics Association, the American Association of Museum Curators (AAMC) and of the International Contemporary Art Curators Association (IKT).

Photo Credit: Suzanne Davidson 

Matthew Hills 

Matthew Hills is Director and Curator of the Grenfell Art Gallery in Newfoundland and Labrador. He is co-curator of the 2021 Bonavista Biennale, and has curated exhibitions at The Rooms (St. John’s), Agnes Etherington Art Centre (Kingston), and Belkin Satellite (Vancouver). He has worked in a curatorial capacity at the University of Alberta (Edmonton), Vancouver Art Gallery, and Agnes Etherington Art Centre. 

He is a past Program Chair of Nuit Blanche Edmonton, and a founding board member of the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning (Kingston). His writing on contemporary art has been published in catalogues and periodicals, including Border Crossings, Muse, BlackFlash, and Syphon. He is a graduate of the University of British Columbia, where he received his M.A. in Critical and Curatorial Studies. 

Michelle Jacques 

Michelle Jacques is a curator, writer and educator who moved to Treaty 6 territory in February 2021 to begin her post as Head of Exhibitions and Collections/Chief Curator at Remai Modern. Prior to this recent move, she was Chief Curator at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV) for 8 years, where she was responsible for guiding a curatorial and education program linking contemporary practices, ideas and issues to the Gallery's historical collections and legacies. At the AGGV, she facilitated projects with contemporary artists Rodney Sayers and Emily Luce; Gwen MacGregor; Hiraki Sawa; Charles Campbell and Farheen HaQ; and Carol Sawyer; co-curated major retrospectives of the work of Anna Banana and Jock Macdonald; and developed a series of installations that used the AGGV’s collection to evoke cross-temporal and cross-cultural conversations. Prior to moving west, she held various roles in the Contemporary and Canadian departments of the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; was the Director of Programming at the Centre for Art Tapes in Halifax; and taught courses in writing, art history and curatorial studies at NSCAD University, University of Toronto Mississauga, and OCAD University. 

Lisa Kehler 

Lisa Kehler is an art consultant specializing in contemporary art curating, project management, and community engagement based in Winnipeg, MB, Canada. She holds a BA (Honours) in Art History (2007) and an MA in Curatorial Practices (2013), both from the University of Winnipeg. In the last 5 years she has curated over 30 exhibitions across North America, most recently for One Mile Gallery (NY). Having worked in the arts sector for the nearly 2 decades she was founder/owner of Lisa Kehler Art + Projects (now Never_Open_NO), and has partnered with organizations across Canada including Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, NIAD, Plug In ICA, and Border Crossings Magazine. She has been published multiple times in Canadian Art, Kolaj, and was the Winnipeg correspondent for Akimbo in 2014.

Kehler is currently creating an online course for NSCAD focusing on how to navigate working with commercial galleries. She is a proud Board member of Urban Shaman Gallery.

Photo by Sebastian Kriete 

Gerald McMaster 

Gerald McMaster – curator, artist, author, and professor – is Tier 1 Canada Research of Indigenous Visual Culture and Curatorial Practice and director of the Wapatah: Centre for Indigenous Visual Knowledge at OCAD University.

Dr. McMaster has over 30 years of international work and expertise in contemporary art, critical theory, museology and indigenous aesthetics, working at such institutions as the Art Gallery of Ontario, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, and the Canadian Museum of Civilization. His experience as an artist and curator in art and ethnology museums researching and collecting art as well as producing exhibitions has given him a thorough understanding of transnational Indigenous visual knowledge and curatorial practice. 

Twice he was chosen as Canadian curator to the prestigious Venice (Architecture) Biennale, first for the Edward Poitras exhibition (1995) and then Unceded: Voices of the Land exhibition featuring 18 Indigenous architects (2018). In 2010, he was the Canadian Commissioner to Biennale of Sydney; and in 2012 he was Artistic Director to the 18th Biennale of Sydney. McMaster’s upcoming exhibitions include: Postcommodity: Time Holds All the Answers for the Remai Modern (2021) and Arctic/Amazon for the Power Plant (2022).

His most recent book is entitled Iljuwas Bill Reid: Life & Work for Art Canada Institute (2020).

McMaster is a nêhiyaw (Plains Cree) and a citizen of the Siksika Nation. 

Photo by Daniella Okezie 

Crystal Mowry 

Crystal Mowry is Senior Curator at the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery where she has been employed since 2005. Her work often explores the tension between perceived authenticity and troubled forms of representation. As a curator operating primarily within the context of a public art museum, she treats her role as equal parts co-conspirator and translator, often seeking ways to support artists in the development of new projects. Her solo projects with Ontario-based artists Maggie Groat and Ernest Daetwyler have received Exhibition of the Year Awards from the Ontario Association of Art Galleries. In 2013 she co-curated Romancing the Anthropocene, a group exhibition situated in Toronto’s financial district for Nuit Blanche She has written curatorial and experimental texts for various artist-focused projects, including Still Move: Brendan Fernandes, a monograph on the performance and installation work of Brendan Fernandes for which she also served as an editor. She regularly participates on advisory panels and industry juries, most notably for the Sobey Art Award (2015) and the RBC Canadian Painting Competition (2018). 

Photo by cheyanne turions 

cheyanne turions 

cheyanne turions is a curator, cultural worker and writer currently based on the unceded territories of xʷməθkwəy̓əm, Skwxwú7mesh and Səl̓ílwətaɬ Nations. Her work positions exhibitions and criticism as social gestures, where she responds to artistic practices by linking aesthetics and politics through discourse. Recent projects include Affirmations for Wildflowers: An Ethnobotany of Desire, a solo exhibition by Tania Willard, and The Pandemic is a Portal a group exhibition co-curated with Karina Irvine and Christopher Lacroix, featuring works by Sharona Franklin, S F Ho, Cecily Nicholson, Carmen Papalia, Jayce Salloum, any many others. She is the Curator at SFU Galleries, and sits on the Board of Directors at 221A and the National Editorial Advisory Committee of Canadian Art. 

Rachel Topham Photography 

Emmy Lee Wall 

Emmy Lee Wall is Executive Director of Capture Photography Festival where she oversees all strategic, programming and editorial initiatives, having previously served on Capture’s Board of Directors. Since her tenure at Capture in 2019, she has curated projects with a diverse range of lens-based artists including Vikky Alexander, Elisabeth Belliveau, Krystle Coughlin Silverfox, Moyra Davey, Christopher Lacroix, Meryl McMaster, Zinnia Naqvi, Steven Shearer, and Elizabeth Zvonar. Prior to her role with Capture, Wall was part of the curatorial team at the Vancouver Art Gallery where she researched and coordinated the acquisition of more than 2500 works of art to the Gallery’s permanent collection. She also curated the Vancouver Art Gallery’s presentation of Site Unseen (2018) and Andrew Dadson: Over the Sun (2015) and co-curated The Metamorphosis (2018); The Poetics of Space (2015); Michael Lin: A Modest Veil (2010); and The Tree: From the Sublime to the Social (2008). Wall also played an integral role in several other major exhibitions including Vermeer, Rembrandt and the Golden Age of Dutch Art: Masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum (2009); The Colour of My Dreams: The Surrealist Revolution in Art (2011); and Douglas Coupland: everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything (2014). She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Art Foundation.