Stan Douglas nabs major Hasselblad photography prize

    1 of 2 2 of 2

      Vancouver photo, film, and video artist Stan Douglas has just won the 2016 Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography.

      It awards the tidy sum of SEK1,000,000 (approximately EUR110,000 or CAN$160,000).

      The award ceremony takes place in Gothenburg, Sweden, on October 17, 2016, followed the next day by the opening of an exhibition of Douglas’s work at the Hasselblad Center. On the same day, the Hasselblad Foundation will host a symposium with the award winner, and a new book about Stan Douglas will be published by MACK.

      The foundation's jury said of Douglas's work in its award statement: "An artist of outstanding significance, Stan Douglas has received international recognition for his powerful photographic art, as well as his work with video and film. His practice reflects carefully and poignantly on the history of photography and film, offering new understandings of the cultural and technological developments of both media. Furthermore, Stan Douglas has an open and highly innovative approach to both analogue and new digital formats. At the heart of his work lies a strong interest and commitment to social issues of race, gender, identity and post-colonial politics, whilst maintaining a valuable self-critical perspective on the role of the artist in contemporary culture."

      “Douglas’s engagement with the histories of still and moving images, sociological approach to staged and performative work, and critical attention to the apparatus of photography – in terms of historic styles, processes and vintage equipment, and the most sophisticated digital languages of contemporary technology – are transformational," noted Roxana Marcoci, senior curator of photography at MoMA, New York, and chair of the 2016 Hasselbald Award Jury said in a press statement.

      Douglas is perhaps best-known locally for his Abbott & Cordova, 7 August 1971, a massive, backlit, elaborately staged photo installation that now hangs above the SFU Woodward's building atrium and depicts the Gastown Riot. 

      Douglas also created a fully interactive, virtual-reality installation called Circa 1948, digital film recreation of two long-gone Vancouver locales as they appeared just after the Second World War, for SFU Woodward's  Hidden Pasts, Digital Futures exhibit last fall.

      Douglas's work hangs in galleries from our own Vancouver Art Gallery and the National Art Gallery to the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, Tate Gallery in London, and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.