Visual artist and author Christi Belcourt is the 2014 recipient of the Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award. Created in 2012, this award celebrates the work of Aboriginal artists and arts leaders who have made significant contributions to the arts in Ontario.
The $10,000 prize will be presented at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) exhibition Before and after the Horizon: Anishinaabe Artists of the Great Lakes on Wednesday, July 30 at 6:30 p.m. The event will also include the unveiling of a new work commissioned from Belcourt by the AGO. The public is welcome to attend the event, during which admission to the AGO will be free.
“Now is an important time to honour Christi, her leadership and the gravitas of her work,” noted the jury. “Her art and activism cannot be separated. She is an inspiring and vital voice in the community – a humble spirit and a force of nature.”
The OAC Aboriginal Arts Award also honours the next generation of artists: each year, the award recipient is invited to nominate an emerging Aboriginal artist to receive a $2,500 prize. Belcourt has selected visual artist and dancer Jaime Koebel as this year’s Emerging Aboriginal artist.